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Br J Dermatol. 2014 Jan;170(1):11-9. doi: 10.1111/bjd.12492.

Emerging trends in the epidemiology of melanoma.

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Department of Dermatology, Andreas Sygros Hospital, University of Athens Medical School, 5 Dragoumi Street, Athens, 16121, Greece.


Cutaneous melanoma (CM) is one of the most rapidly growing cancers worldwide, with a consistent increase in incidence among white populations over the past four decades. Despite the early detection of primarily thin melanomas and the improved survival rates observed in several countries, the rate of thick melanomas has remained constant or continues to increase, especially in the older age group. Current considerations in the epidemiology of melanoma focus on the observed survival benefit of females vs. males, the contributing role of indoor tanning in melanoma risk and the diverse effect of sun exposure in the development of different types of melanoma with respect to their clinical and mutational profile. Certain well-known risk factors, such as skin, hair and eye pigmentation and melanocytic naevi have been validated in large-scale association studies, while additional lifestyle factors and iatrogenic exposures, such as immunosuppressive agents and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are being investigated. In addition, genome-wide association studies have revealed genetic loci that underlie the genetic susceptibility of melanoma, some of which are related to known risk factors. Recently, an interesting association of melanoma with Parkinson disease has been noted, with a higher than expected frequency of melanoma in patients with Parkinson disease and vice versa. This review article provides an update in the epidemiology of cutaneous melanoma and discusses recent developments in the field.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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