Biological Research for Nursing
Cutaneous malignant melanoma (CMM) is an epidemic cancer in the United States. Survival rates for invasive CMM have not increased in past decades despite numerous clinical trials and the effective use of various combinations of chemotherapy agents to treat other cancers. Recent research has investigated the role of melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), a gene associated with red-hair phenotype in White individuals and with increased risk for developing CMM, in the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway. This limited narrative review discusses the incidence, history, and risk factors for CMM. It explores familial CMM and provides a brief review of melanocyte development and melanogenesis. Histology of CMM and cytogenetic techniques used to identify CMM mutations is also discussed. The structure and function of MC1R is described, with particular attention to MC1R's role in the MAPK pathway. Finally, the review touches on individualized therapy for CMM using genetic biomarkers and explores the promise of genomic research for finding effective treatments.
Please use publisher's recommended citation. http://brn.sagepub.com/content/16/4/421.full.pdf