Prognostic Role Of Microsatellites In Melanoma and Implications In The American Joint Committee On Cancer Classification System

Microsatellites were associated with other adverse melanoma prognostic factors. A multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that they are an independent risk factor for worse OS, MSS, and disease-free survival.

source: JAAD

Summary

A Cohort Study

[Posted 27/Feb/2023]

AUDIENCE: Dermatology, Oncology

KEY FINDINGS: Microsatellites were associated with other adverse melanoma prognostic factors. A multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that they are an independent risk factor for worse OS, MSS, and disease-free survival. Patients with stage IIIB melanoma with microsatellites had worse OS and MSS, whereas patients with stage IIIC melanoma had worse OS but not MSS.

BACKGROUND: There is limited information on microsatellite survival outcomes in patients with melanoma. Purpose of this study is to evaluate survival outcomes in patients with microsatellites, assess their role within stage III stratification of the American Joint Committee on Cancer classification, and assess the results of sentinel lymph node biopsies in patients with microsatellites.

DETAILS: A retrospective bicenter cohort study from 1998 to 2019 included patients with a diagnosis of invasive cutaneous melanoma. Of a total of 5216 patients, 108 (2.1%) had microsatellites at initial staging. Survival analysis showed that microsatellites were an independent risk factor with decreased overall survival (OS), melanoma-specific survival (MSS), and disease-free survival, with hazard ratios of 1.57, 1.76, and 1.76, respectively. Stratified analysis in patients with stage III melanoma showed a 5-year OS of 35% (95% CI, 17.3%-73.4%) and a MSS of 45% (95% CI, 23.1-87.5) for patients with stage IIIB melanoma with microsatellites.

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Source: Riquelme-Mc Loughlin, C., Sandoval-Clavijo, A., Blnco de Tord, M., et al. (2023). Prognostic Role Of Microsatellites In Melanoma and Implications In The American Joint Committee On Cancer Classification System: A Cohort Study. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2023; 88(2): 338-347. Published: February, 2023. DOI: 10.1016/j.jaad.2022.10.027.



Metastasis Of Skin Squamous Cell Carcinoma In Kidney Transplant Recipients

Both groups, KTRs and ICs, exhibited similar primary tumor grades and metastasis evolution, but KTRs had a higher prevalence of lymphovascular invasion. Metastasis of cSCC was more common in males with low skin phototype, in KTRs, particularly on the head and neck. The study suggests a possible link between lymphovascular invasion and metastasis development in KTRs.

source: Int J Dermatol

Summary

[Posted 8/May/2024]

AUDIENCE: Dermatology, Oncology, Family Medicine

KEY FINDINGS: Both groups, KTRs and ICs, exhibited similar primary tumor grades and metastasis evolution, but KTRs had a higher prevalence of lymphovascular invasion. Metastasis of cSCC was more common in males with low skin phototype, in KTRs, particularly on the head and neck. The study suggests a possible link between lymphovascular invasion and metastasis development in KTRs.

BACKGROUND: Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC) is the most common skin malignancy in kidney transplant recipients (KTRs) as a result of immunosuppression.

DETAILS: A worldwide increase in kidney transplantation justifies the determination of prognostic biomarkers by collecting detailed patient data on metastasis development. This study aims to characterize the clinical, epidemiological, and histopathological profiles of KTRs who developed metastasis of cSCC. Authors conducted a retrospective single-center study on 18 KTRs and 21 immunocompetent patients (ICs) with metastatic cSCC, using data from 2004 to 2021. ICs were older (median age 70.5 years) than KTRs (median age: 59.5 years). Both groups were predominantly male with Fitzpatrick skin phototype I/II. The primary tumor appeared around 83.5 ; months post-transplant, usually in sun-exposed areas (61.1%), though some non-exposed areas in ICs (23.8%) contradicted literature findings. KTRs took longer to develop metastasis (median: 11.0 months) compared to ICs (median: 5.5 months). The mean size of the primary tumor was smaller in KTRs (2.50 cm2) compared to ICs (4.55 cm2). The main lymph node chain affected by metastasis was parotid lymph nodes in KTRs (27.8%) and cervical/axillar lymph nodes in ICs (both 19.0%).

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Copyright © John Wiley & Sons Ltd. All rights reserved.

Source: Alves, F. F. C., de Jesus, L. C. B., Cristelli, M. P., et al. (2024). Metastasis Of Skin Squamous Cell Carcinoma In Kidney Transplant Recipients. Int J Dermatol. 2024; 63(5): 560-564. Published: March, 2024. DOI: 10.1111/ijd.17029.



Rapidly Evolving Pre- and Post-surgical Systemic Treatment of Melanoma

Melanoma therapeutics continues to advance with combination adjuvant approaches now investigating anti-PD1 with lymphocyte activation gene 3 (LAG3), T-cell immunoreceptor with Ig and ITIM domains (TIGIT), and individualized neoantigen therapies. How this progress will be integrated into the management of a unique patient to reduce recurrence, limit toxicity, and avoid over-treatment will dominate clinical research and patient care over the next decade.

source: Am J Clin Dermatol

Summary

[Posted 25/Mar/2024]

AUDIENCE: Dermatology, Family Medicine

KEY FINDINGS: Melanoma therapeutics continues to advance with combination adjuvant approaches now investigating anti-PD1 with lymphocyte activation gene 3 (LAG3), T-cell immunoreceptor with Ig and ITIM domains (TIGIT), and individualized neoantigen therapies. How this progress will be integrated into the management of a unique patient to reduce recurrence, limit toxicity, and avoid over-treatment will dominate clinical research and patient care over the next decade.

BACKGROUND: With the development of effective BRAF-targeted and immune-checkpoint immunotherapies for metastatic melanoma, clinical trials are moving these treatments into earlier adjuvant and perioperative settings. BRAF-targeted therapy is a standard of care in resected stage III-IV melanoma, while anti-programmed death-1 (PD1) immunotherapy is now a standard of care option in resected stage IIB through IV disease.

DETAILS: With both modalities, recurrence-free survival and distant-metastasis-free survival are improved by a relative 35-50%, yet no improvement in overall survival has been demonstrated. Neoadjuvant anti-PD1 therapy improves event-free survival by approximately an absolute 23%, although improvements in overall survival have yet to be demonstrated. Understanding which patients are most likely to recur and which are most likely to benefit from treatment is now the highest priority question in the field. Biomarker analyses, such as gene expression profiling of the primary lesion and circulating DNA, are preliminarily exciting as potential biomarkers, though each has drawbacks. As in the setting of metastatic disease, markers that inform positive outcomes include interferon-γ gene expression, PD-L1, and high tumor mutational burden, while negative predictors of outcome include circulating factors such as lactate dehydrogenase, interleukin-8, and C-reactive protein. Integrating and validating these markers into clinically relevant models is thus a high priority.

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Copyright © Springer Nature. All rights reserved.

Source: Augustin, R. C. and Luke, J. J. (2024). Rapidly Evolving Pre- and Post-surgical Systemic Treatment of Melanoma. American Journal of Clinical Dermatology. Published: March, 2024. DOI: 10.1007/s40257-024-00852-5.



Human Hair Graying Revisited

The temporary reversibility of graying is highlighted by several drugs and hormones that induce repigmentation, indicating potential target pathways. Authors advise caution in directly applying mouse model concepts, define major open questions, and discuss future human antigraying strategies.

source: JID

Summary

Principles, Misconceptions, and Key Research Frontiers

[Posted 6/Mar/2024]

AUDIENCE: Dermatology, Family Medicine

KEY FINDINGS: The temporary reversibility of graying is highlighted by several drugs and hormones that induce repigmentation, indicating potential target pathways. Authors advise caution in directly applying mouse model concepts, define major open questions, and discuss future human antigraying strategies.

BACKGROUND: Hair graying holds psychosocial importance and serves as an excellent model for studying human pigmentation and aging in an accessible miniorgan.

DETAILS: Current evidence suggests that graying results from an interindividually varying mixture of cumulative oxidative and DNA damage, excessive mTORC1 activity, melanocyte senescence, and inadequate production of pigmentation-promoting factors in the hair matrix. Various regulators modulate this process, including genetic factors (DNA repair defects and IRF4 sequence variation, peripheral clock genes, P-cadherin signaling, neuromediators, HGF, KIT ligand secretion, and autophagic flux. This leads to reduced MITF- and tyrosinase-controlled melanogenesis, defective melanosome transfer to precortical matrix keratinocytes, and eventual depletion of hair follicle (HF) pigmentary unit (HFPU) melanocytes and their local progenitors. Graying becomes irreversible only when bulge melanocyte stem cells are also depleted, occurring later in this process. Distinct pigmentary microenvironments are created as the HF cycles: early anagen is the most conducive phase for melanocytic reintegration and activation, and only during anagen can the phenotype of hair graying and repigmentation manifest, whereas the HFPU disassembles during catagen.

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Copyright © The Authors. Published by Elsevier, Inc. on behalf of the Society for Investigative Dermatology. All rights reserved.

Source: Paus, R., Sevilla, A., and Grichnik, J. M. (2024). Human Hair Graying Revisited: Principles, Misconceptions, and Key Research Frontiers. Journal of Investigative Dermatology. 2024; 144(3): 474-491. Published: March, 2024. DOI: 10.1016/j.jid.2023.09.276.



Plectin Deficiency in Fibroblasts Deranges Intermediate Filament and Organelle Morphology, Migration, and Adhesion

Plectin, a highly versatile and multifunctional cytolinker, has been implicated in several multisystemic disorders. Most sequence variations in the human plectin gene (PLEC) cause epidermolysis bullosa simplex with muscular dystrophy (EBS-MD), an autosomal recessive skin-blistering disorder associated with progressive muscle weakness.

source: JID

Summary

[Posted 28/Feb/2024]

AUDIENCE: Dermatology, Family Medicine

KEY FINDINGS:

BACKGROUND: Plectin, a highly versatile and multifunctional cytolinker, has been implicated in several multisystemic disorders. Most sequence variations in the human plectin gene (PLEC) cause epidermolysis bullosa simplex with muscular dystrophy (EBS-MD), an autosomal recessive skin-blistering disorder associated with progressive muscle weakness.

DETAILS: In this study, authors performed a comprehensive cell biological analysis of dermal fibroblasts from three different patients with EBS-MD, where PLEC expression analyses revealed preserved mRNA levels in all cases, whereas full-length plectin protein content was significantly reduced or completely absent. Downstream effects of pathogenic PLEC sequence alterations included massive bundling of vimentin intermediate filament networks, including the occurrence of ring-like nuclei-encasing filament bundles, elongated mitochondrial networks, and abnormal nuclear morphologies. We found that essential fibroblast functions such as wound healing, migration, or orientation upon cyclic stretch were significantly impaired in the cells of patients with EBS-MD. Finally, EBS-MD fibroblasts displayed reduced adhesion capacities, which could be attributed to smaller focal adhesion contacts. Our study not only emphasizes plectin's functional role in human skin fibroblasts, it also provides further insights into the understanding of EBS-MD–associated disease mechanisms.

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Copyright © The Authors. Published by Elsevier, Inc. on behalf of the Society for Investigative Dermatology. All rights reserved.

Source: Zrelski, M. M., Hosele, S., Kustermann, M., et al. (2024). Plectin Deficiency in Fibroblasts Deranges Intermediate Filament and Organelle Morphology, Migration, and Adhesion. Journal of Investigative Dermatology. 2024; 144(3): 547-562.e9. Published: March, 2024. DOI: 10.1016/j.jid.2023.08.020.



Increased Risk of Recurrence and Disease-Specific Death Following Delayed Postoperative Radiation for Merkel Cell Carcinoma

Delay of PORT was associated with increased LRR, usually beyond the radiation field. This is consistent with the tendency of MCC to spread quickly via lymphatics. Initiation of PORT within 8 weeks was associated with improved locoregional control and MCC-specific survival.

source: JAAD

Summary

[Posted 19/Feb/2024]

AUDIENCE: Dermatology, Oncology

KEY FINDINGS: Delay of PORT was associated with increased LRR, usually beyond the radiation field. This is consistent with the tendency of MCC to spread quickly via lymphatics. Initiation of PORT within 8 weeks was associated with improved locoregional control and MCC-specific survival.

BACKGROUND: Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is often treated with surgery and postoperative radiation therapy (PORT). The optimal time to initiate PORT (Time-to-PORT [ttPORT]) is unknown. Purpose of this study was to assess if delays in ttPORT were associated with inferior outcomes.

DETAILS: Competing risk regression was used to evaluate associations between ttPORT and locoregional recurrence (LRR) for patients with stage I/II MCC in a prospective registry and adjust for covariates. Distant metastasis and death were competing risks. The cohort included 124 patients with median ttPORT of 41 days (range: 8-125 days). Median follow-up was 55 months. 17 (14%) patients experienced a LRR, 14 (82%) of which arose outside the radiation field. LRR at 5 years was increased for ttPORT >8 weeks vs less than or equal to 8 weeks, 28.0% vs 9.2%, P = .006. There was an increase in the cumulative incidence of MCC-specific death with increasing ttPORT (HR = 1.14 per 1-week increase, P = .016).

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Copyright © Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Source: Alexander, N. A., Schaub, S. K., Goff, P. H., et al. (2024). Increased Risk of Recurrence and Disease-Specific Death Following Delayed Postoperative Radiation for Merkel Cell Carcinoma. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2024; 90(2): 261-2678. Published: February, 2024. DOI: 10.1016/j.jaad.2023.07.1047.



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