Written By Kevin Kerfoot / Reviewed By Ray Spotts
A recent study conducted by the University of Queensland finds that targeting large clones of skin cells caused by ultraviolet irradiation may help reduce skin cancers. The study reveals proliferation of these large clones was concentrated around hair pores and not evenly distributed.
"Using genetic engineering of skin epidermal stem cells, we were able to track the growth, regression and cancerization of individual clones that resulted from UV exposure,” says Professor Kiarash Khosrotehrani. "We found large clones regressed in size as soon as skin irradiation stopped, highlighting the importance of sun protection.”
Keratinocyte cancers - basal and squamous cell carcinomas - are strongly linked to sun exposure, and skin cancers are more likely to be found in large clones.
"While surgery is extremely effective in treating individual keratinocyte cancers, it doesn't prevent a high proportion of patients from developing subsequent tumors in the same sun damaged area," added Dr. Dr Edwige Roy. "In Queensland, about four percent of people experience 10 or more skin cancers every three years. For these patients, skin cancer is a chronic disease with multiple surgeries and regular skin checks required during their lifetime.”
The study helps clarify the influence of UV irradiation in its development by evaluating clone size dynamics in skin exposed to chronic ultraviolet irradiation.
"It also considers whether specific clones have more propensity to form skin cancer,” Roy added. “Our findings have major implications for reducing skin cancer through sun protection and reducing the size of skin clones. Chemoprevention treatment could play a significant role in addition to sun protection by reducing the size of skin cancer clones, lowering keratinocyte cancers rates in Australia."
Mapping Melanoma To Reduce Skin Cancers
A critical link in mapping recurrent mutations of melanoma was recently discovered by researchers at Washington State University School of Molecular Biosciences, in collaboration with researchers at Georgia State University. The findings were published in Nature Communications.
Researchers established that DNA binding by a specific set of transcription factors, called ETS, is inherently mutagenic in UV-exposed cells. With new genome mapping technology, these findings provide a crucial understanding of mutations that result at ETS binding sites located in specific genes that are known to be drivers in the onset of melanoma in humans.
WSU researchers have developed a next-generation sequencing-based technology that allows them to precisely map the locations of UV-induced DNA damage throughout the whole human genome. Using this advanced technology, they generated a high-resolution UV damage map in human cells.
By correlating the UV damage map with melanoma mutations, they discovered significantly elevated UV damage levels at ETS binding sites, which massively increased mutation rates at the same sites in sequenced melanoma genomes.
"UV-induced DNA damage is the major risk factor for melanoma, and DNA repair is a vital first line of defense against DNA damage to prevent mutations and cancer," says Steven Roberts, assistant professor, WSU School of Molecular Biosciences, in WSU's College of Veterinary Medicine. "These pivotal results establish a fundamental research tool in cancer research and confirms we are on the correct course to further discovery by mapping UV damage in human cells."
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With over 30 years of writing and editing experience for newspapers, magazines and corporate communications, Kevin Kerfoot writes about natural health, nutrition, skincare and oral hygiene for Trusted Health Products’ natural health blog and newsletters.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.