Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Inherited Melanoma Risk: What You Do Know Does Help You

Date:
June 23, 2008
Source:
University of Utah Health Sciences
Summary:
When people know the results of genetic tests confirming they have inherited an increased risk of developing melanoma, they follow skin cancer screening recommendations more proactively -- much like those who have already been diagnosed with the potentially deadly disease, according to a study in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

When people know the results of genetic tests confirming they have inherited an increased risk of developing melanoma, they follow skin cancer screening recommendations more proactively--much like those who have already been diagnosed with the potentially deadly disease, according to results of a study completed at the University of Utah's Huntsman Cancer Institute and published in the June issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

Tests for mutations in the CDKN2A gene can reveal a reason that melanomas "run" in families. The study evaluated the intent to follow, and the actual practice of, skin cancer early detection methods by members of families that carry CDKN2A gene mutations. Study participants were drawn from a group of Utahns who participated in the original "CDKN2A gene hunt" 10 to 12 years ago. They already knew that their family history might put them at increased risk for melanoma, and they had previously received melanoma prevention and screening education.

The results showed that people who tested positive for the CDKN2A mutation followed melanoma screening recommendations more carefully than before, even if they had not had a melanoma. In addition, knowing the test results did not lead family members without the mutation to decrease their screening measures.

"Before these studies, it was unclear whether reporting the results to family members who have been tested was valuable or potentially harmful to patients," said co-principal investigator Sancy Leachman, MD, PhD, director of the Tom C. Mathews Jr. Familial Melanoma Research Clinic (FMRC) and associate professor in the Department of Dermatology at the University of Utah School of Medicine. Leachman specializes in melanoma genetics.

Lisa Aspinwall, PhD, associate professor in the University of Utah Department of Psychology, is co-principal investigator on the studies. "We wanted to know whether learning their results helps people comply better with melanoma screening recommendations. We also wanted to know if people who find out that they are negative for the mutation decrease their efforts as a result of knowing their genetic status."

"People with a family history of melanoma who do not carry the mutation are still at almost twice the risk of developing melanoma as people in the general population," Leachman said.

Melanoma is the most serious type of skin cancer. The National Cancer Institute estimates that more than 62,000 people will be diagnosed with the disease in 2008, and more than 8,000 will die of it. Cancer experts estimate that about ten percent of melanomas are associated with familial or inherited syndromes.

Samantha Leaf, Erin Dola, and Wendy Kohlmann are co-authors of the published paper. The work was supported by a Funding Incentive Seed Grant from the University of Utah's Office of the Vice President for Research, Huntsman Cancer Foundation, the Tom C. Mathews Jr. Familial Melanoma Research Clinic endowment, the Pedigree and Population Resource of Huntsman Cancer Institute, and a Templeton Positive Psychology Prize, awarded to Aspinwall by the John Templeton Foundation and the American Psychological Association. Huntsman Cancer Institute core facilities are supported by a Cancer Center Support Grant from the National Cancer Institute.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Utah Health Sciences. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Utah Health Sciences. "Inherited Melanoma Risk: What You Do Know Does Help You." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 June 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080617160800.htm>.
University of Utah Health Sciences. (2008, June 23). Inherited Melanoma Risk: What You Do Know Does Help You. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 3, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080617160800.htm
University of Utah Health Sciences. "Inherited Melanoma Risk: What You Do Know Does Help You." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080617160800.htm (accessed September 3, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) You're more likely to gain weight while watching action flicks than you are watching other types of programming, says a new study published in JAMA. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) The U.N. says the problem is two-fold — quarantine zones and travel restrictions are limiting the movement of both people and food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctors Fear They're Losing Battle Against Ebola

Doctors Fear They're Losing Battle Against Ebola

AP (Sep. 2, 2014) As a third American missionary is confirmed to have contracted Ebola in Liberia, doctors on the ground in West Africa fear they're losing the battle against the outbreak. (Sept. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tech Giants Bet on 3D Headsets for Gaming, Healthcare

Tech Giants Bet on 3D Headsets for Gaming, Healthcare

AFP (Sep. 2, 2014) When Facebook acquired the virtual reality hardware developer Oculus VR in March for $2 billion, CEO Mark Zuckerberg hailed the firm's technology as "a new communication platform." Duration: 02:24 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins