New MRF White Paper Provides Road Map for Eradicating Melanoma

April 17, 2016

More research needs to be done about what range of wavelengths in the ultraviolet band need to be blocked to prevent melanoma, according to a new white paper from Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF).

The paper, "The State of Melanoma: Challenges and Opportunities," appears  in the journal Pigment Cell & Melanoma Research, and highlights the questions that need to be answered to fully  turn the tables on this stealth cancer

Also high on the group’s research agenda is the cultivation of a better understanding of how melanoma cells survive and what causes them to awaken and progress.

What’s more, developing more precise methods of diagnosis will reduce anxiety for patients and significantly benefit healthcare costs, the paper states. Currently 25 biopsies are performed for every melanoma found. Given the incidence of melanoma, and a demonstrated 40-70% underreporting rate, this translates to more than 4 million biopsies performed to diagnose 170,000 melanomas.

Clinicians are seeing resistance to immunotherapy develop after an initial positive response, and identifying how acquired resistance happens—and how to overcome resistance is essential in maximizing the benefit of these treatments.

"The MRF brought together these experts to develop recommendations that will drive the future of melanoma research and make major strides toward our goal of eradicating this deadly and elusive cancer once and for all," says Tim Turnham, Ph.D., executive director of the MRF, in a news release. "Throughout the past ten years progress has been made in understanding melanoma, but the work is not done. “

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