New Clues to Skin Cancer Development Show Sunscreen is Not Enough

“Scientists have shown that sunscreen cannot be relied upon alone to prevent malignant melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, according to research* published in Nature.

“The work supports the approach taken by public health campaigns that call for people to use a combination of shade and clothing to protect their skin, applying sunscreen to the areas you can’t cover.

“The research explains more about the mechanism by which UV light leads to melanoma and also explores the extent to which sunscreen is able to prevent UV light from damaging healthy cells.”

People of Color Need Sun Protection to Avoid Skin Cancer

“Although skin cancer is less prevalent among people of color than in whites, sun protection and other preventive measures are essential components of skin care in these populations, according to research published online Jan. 30 in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.”

Targeted Intervention Decreased Melanoma Risk, Increased Early Prevention

“A targeted screening and education strategy aimed at patients at high risk for melanoma favorably affected behaviors that may reduce melanoma risk compared with a standard information-based campaign, according to the results of a recent study published in Annals of Family Medicine.

“General practitioner counseling, combined with a skin examination and a self-assessment tool resulted in patients retaining information about melanoma risk factors and reducing high-risk behaviors.”

Why Today’s Reports About Skin Cancer and Alcohol are Misleading

“Let’s be clear – drinking alcohol carries health risks.

“It causes seven different types of cancer. And the more we cut down on alcohol, the more we reduce our risk of the disease.

“But while we’d certainly like people to be more aware of the link between alcohol and cancer, we also believe in good quality evidence. And that’s why today’s newspaper headlines linking drinking and the most serious form of skin cancer, malignant melanoma, bothered us.

“Because the evidence simply isn’t strong enough to link the two.”

Drinking Linked to Skin Cancer

Just one drink a day could raise the risk of skin cancer by 20%, says new research that combined 16 existing studies which together included thousands of people. The researchers also found that drinking the equivalent of a few strong beers increased the risk of melanoma as much as 55%. What’s the link between alcohol and skin cancer? The type of alcohol in drinks is ethanol, which our bodies soon metabolize into another compound called acetaldehyde — and this compound may make skin more sensitive to the UV light that can cause skin cancer. That said, the researchers acknowledge that it may simply be that drinkers are more likely to bask in the sun longer without protection. However, they also remind us that alcohol is now linked to seven kinds of cancer, and say that cutting down on drinking could also cut the risk of cancer.

Plexxikon updates Zelboraf Phase 1 data on BRAF V600E mutation-positive melanoma

Plexxikon today announced that updated Phase 1 clinical data of Zelboraf (vemurafenib) were presented at the Society for Melanoma Research (SMR) 2012 Congress, held November 8-11 in Los Angeles, CA.

Watchdog approves skin cancer drugs ipilimumab and vemurafenib

Patients with an advanced form of skin cancer were given new hope today after the health watchdog recommended that two life-extending treatments should be available on the NHS.

Combined BRAF and MEK Inhibition Improves Outcome in Metastatic Melanoma

The combination of dabrafenib and trametinib is safe and effective in BRAF-mutant melanoma.

PLOS ONE: The Prognostic Value of BRAF Mutation in Colorectal Cancer and Melanoma: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

PLOS ONE: an inclusive, peer-reviewed, open-access resource from the PUBLIC LIBRARY OF SCIENCE. Reports of well-performed scientific studies from all disciplines freely available to the whole world.