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J Invest Dermatol. 2006 Oct;126(10):2242-6. Epub 2006 May 11.

The EGF A61G polymorphism is associated with disease-free period and survival in malignant melanoma.

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Department of Dermatology, Center of Excellence and the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Clinical and Experimental Oncology, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.


An earlier study reported that a common polymorphism in the 5' untranslated region of the epidermal growth factor (EGF) gene is associated with increased risk for cutaneous malignant melanoma (MM) and Breslow thickness. Since then, several independent studies have reported conflicting results that have challenged this hypothesis. However, none of the previous studies examined survival as the primary outcome. We therefore sought to study the association between this polymorphism and survival. One hundred and thirty patients diagnosed with MM with a Breslow thickness of >1.5 mm were included in this study. In our collective, the G/G genotype represented a significant risk factor for both shorter disease-free period (hazard ratio of 2.246, 95% CI: 1.06-4.78, P=0.036) and overall MM-specific survival (hazard ratio of 3.8, 95% CI: 1.5-9.5, P=0.004) compared with the A/A genotype, while the heterozygous A/G genotype showed an intermediate risk. In the present study, we demonstrate for the first time that the EGF A61G polymorphism is associated with survival. Our data suggest that this polymorphism is a potential marker for disease severity that predicts earlier progression of MM.

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