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Archives Of Skin News Blog From Medicineworld.Org


March 12, 2009, 9:51 PM CT

A new way to assess melanoma

A new way to assess melanoma
Every tumor, starting from a size of a few millimeters, depends on a supply of nutrients and oxygen. Therefore, using special growth factors, it induces vascular wall cells of neighboring blood vessels to sprout new capillaries in order to get connected to the blood circulation.

This process called angiogenesis involves many different growth factors and their respective receptors on the vascular wall cells. The departments of Prof. Dr. Hellmut Augustin and Prof. Dirk Schadendorf of DKFZ and Mannheim Medical Faculty of the University of Heidelberg have investigated the role of a growth factor called angiopoietin-2 (Ang2) in cancerous melanoma. The docking station of Ang2 is the receptor Tie2 on the surface of endothelial cells, which form the inner lining of blood vessels. Together with other signaling molecules, Ang2 induces sprouting of endothelial cells and the formation of new capillaries.

When measuring the Ang2 concentrations in blood samples of melanoma patients, the researchers discovered that larger tumors and more advanced disease stages correlate with high levels of Ang2. If one tracks the Ang2 levels of individual patients over time, a rise parallel to disease progression can be observed. In contrast, patients who have lived with the disease for a long time, i.e., whose disease is not or only slightly progressive, have lower Ang2 levels. The researchers found out that Ang2 concentration in blood serum is a more precise indicator of the progression and stage of the disease than previously used biomarkers.........

Posted by: George      Read more         Source


February 27, 2009, 6:20 AM CT

How to treat post-burn itching?

How to treat post-burn itching?
Dr. Vincent Gabriel
Mr. Mashburn, a worker at a paper-recycling plant, fell through a loose grate and into a sump pit in September 2008 as he was preparing to inspect a steam valve. Super hot condensate, at a temperature of at least 140 degrees Fahrenheit, enveloped his legs instantly, searing skin up to his thighs.

A co-worker was able to pull Mr. Mashburn out of the pit within 30 seconds, sparing him a worse fate, but he was left with first-, second- and third-degree burns on both legs.

"Once I got out and pulled my pants and my boots off, I remember just watching the skin peel away like you were taking a ladies stocking off. That's how fast the skin went away," he recalled.

Mr. Mashburn, 56, was airlifted to Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, where he received skin grafts on his right leg and both ankles before returning to his Rockwall County home for rehabilitation. His wounds are healing, but the resulting itching requires the application of moisturizing lotion several times a day to relieve the constant sensory irritation.

"Every day on a scale of one to 10, it's about a 3 or a 4. If the moisturizing lotion wears off, if the skin dries and starts to flake and gets a sunburned look, it gets to 8 or 9 on the itch scale. It's pretty intense," Mr. Mashburn said. "If you've ever had a really bad case of poison ivy, that's what it's like".........

Posted by: George      Read more         Source


February 16, 2009, 9:47 PM CT

What's the link between Parkinsonism and melanoma?

What's the link between Parkinsonism and melanoma?
People with a family history of melanoma may have a greater risk of developing Parkinson's disease, as per a research studyreleased recently that will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology's 61st Annual Meeting in Seattle, April 25 to May 2, 2009.

The study involved nearly 157,000 people who did not have Parkinson's disease. They were asked if their parents or siblings had been diagnosed with melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. Scientists then traced their progress for a period of 14 to 20 years. During that time, 616 of the people were diagnosed with Parkinson's disease.

Scientists observed that people with a reported family history of melanoma were nearly twice as likely to develop Parkinson's as people with no family history.

"The results from this study suggest that melanoma and Parkinson's could share common genetic components," said study author Xiang Gao, MD, PhD, of the Harvard University School of Public Health in Boston, MA. "More research needs to be done to examine the relationship between these two diseases."

Other studies have shown that people with Parkinson's disease have a greater risk of developing melanoma.........

Posted by: George      Read more


February 16, 2009, 7:23 PM CT

Sun safety behaviors among pool staff

Sun safety behaviors among pool staff
The social environment at swimming pools may be correlation to sun safety behaviors of outdoor pool staff, as per a report in the recent issue of Archives of Dermatology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

"Skin cancer accounts for almost half of all cancers diagnosed in the United States, and there is both direct and indirect evidence that sun exposure can cause skin cancer," as per background information in the article. Outdoor lifeguards and aquatic instructors are especially at high risk for overexposure to the sun because they are young and because they work outdoors. Sunburn tends to be common among young adults in high school and college due to poor sun protection habits. "About 50 percent of aquatic staff had a history of severe sunburn and almost 80 percent had experienced sunburn the prior summer".

"Interventions in the workplace appears to be effective for reducing sun exposure and improving sun protective behaviors of outdoor workers, but there are few published reports of sun protection interventions in occupational settings and inconsistent findings across those reports," the authors note.

Dawn M. Hall, M.P.H., and his colleagues at the Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Atlanta, studied data collected from the Pool Cool skin cancer prevention program to analyze the associations among the pool environment, social norms and outdoor lifeguards' and aquatic instructors' sun protection habits and sunburns in 2001 and 2002. Demographic information was also noted.........

Posted by: George      Read more         Source


February 12, 2009, 6:21 AM CT

Removing those skin wrinkles

Removing those skin wrinkles
As we get older, fat cells in the subcutaneous layer of the skin become smaller and fewer in number so that they are not longer able to "fill in" damage to the epidermal and dermal skin layers. The results are wrinkles and sagging.
Hollywood stars of a certain age take note: Research at Berkeley Lab suggests that a protein associated with the spread of several major human cancers may also hold great potential for the elimination of wrinkles and the rejuvenation of the skin. If this promise bears fruit, controlling concentrations of the RHAMM protein could one day replace surgical procedures or injections with neurotoxins that carry such unpleasant side-effects as muscle paralysis and loss of facial expressions.

RHAMM stands for Receptor for Hyaluronan Mediated Motility. Mina Bissell, a cell biologist with Berkeley Lab's Life Sciences Division and a leading authority on breast cancer, was collaborating with Eva Turley, an oncology professor at the University of Western Ontario and leading authority on tissue polysaccharides, on a study of the role that RHAMM plays in regulating the signaling of adipocytes (fat cells) during the repairing of tissue wounds from injuries such as skin cuts, heart attacks and stroke. Earlier research by Turley, who discovered RHAMM, had shown that over-expression of this protein points to a poor patient outcome for such human cancers as breast, colon, rectal and stomach.

In the course of their collaborative study, Bissell and Turley, working with mice, discovered that blocking the expression of the RHAMM protein - either by deleting its gene, or through the introduction of a blocking reagent - can be used to selectively induce the generation of fat cells to replace those lost in the aging process. At the same time blocking RHAMM expression also reduces deposits of unhealthy visceral fat.........

Posted by: George      Read more         Source


February 3, 2009, 6:08 AM CT

Skin cancer risk from beach vacations

Skin cancer risk from beach vacations
PHILADELPHIA Vacationing at the shore led to a 5 percent increase in nevi (more usually called "moles") among 7-year-old children, as per a paper published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Number of nevi is the major risk factor for cancerous melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer. Melanoma rates have been rising dramatically over recent decades. More than 62,000 Americans are diagnosed with melanoma each year and more than 8,000 die.

The study was conducted among children who lived in Colorado, but main author Lori Crane, Ph.D., M.P.H., chair of the Department of Community and Behavioral Health at the Colorado School of Public Health, said the findings are applicable worldwide.

"Parents of young children need to be cautious about taking their kids on vacations that are going to be sun-intensive at waterside locations, where people are outside for whole days at a time in skin-exposing swimsuits," said Crane.

Crane said parents often mistakenly think that sunscreen is a cure-all. Eventhough it does offer some protection, the likelihood is that children stay out in the sun longer, thus increasing their risk.

"We recommend that, for young children, parents keep the kids involved in indoor activities from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. to decrease risk, or if they are to be outside, that they wear shirts with sleeves," said Crane.........

Posted by: George      Read more         Source


February 2, 2009, 6:05 AM CT

Nanospheres penetrate melanoma

Nanospheres penetrate melanoma
Chun Li, Ph.D. is a professor in M. D. Anderson's Department of Experimental Diagnostic Imaging.
Hollow gold nanospheres equipped with a targeting peptide find melanoma cells, penetrate them deeply, and then cook the tumor when bathed with near-infrared light, a research team led by researchers at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center published in the Feb. 1 issue of Clinical Cancer Research

"Active targeting of nanoparticles to tumors is the holy grail of therapeutic nanotechnology for cancer. We're getting closer to that goal," said senior author Chun Li, Ph.D., professor in M. D. Anderson's Department of Experimental Diagnostic Imaging. When heated with lasers, the actively targeted hollow gold nanospheres did eight times more damage to melanoma tumors in mice than did the same nanospheres that gathered less directly in the tumors.

Lab and mouse model experiments demonstrated the first in vivo active targeting of gold nanostructures to tumors in conjunction with photothermal ablation - a minimally invasive therapy that uses heat generated through absorption of light to destroy target tissue. Tumors are burned with near-infrared light, which penetrates deeper into tissue than visible or ultraviolet light.

Photothermal ablation is used to treat some cancers by embedding optical fibers inside tumors to deliver near-infrared light. Its efficiency can be greatly improved when a light-absorbing material is applied to the tumor, Li said. Photothermal ablation has been explored for melanoma, but because it also hits healthy tissue, dose duration and volume have been limited.........

Posted by: George      Read more         Source


January 26, 2009, 6:17 AM CT

Genes and psoriasis

Genes and psoriasis
Researchers at the Genome Institute of Singapore (GIS) and the Anhui Medical University, China, have identified genes that play an important role in the development of psoriasis, a common chronic skin disease.

The research, led by GIS Human Genetics Group Leader and Associate Prof. Liu Jianjun, will be published online on 25 Jan. 2009 in the journal Nature Genetics

Studying genetic variants in the human genomes of a large cohort of patients with psorasis and healthy controls in the Chinese population, Dr. Liu and his colleagues, who are one of the three independent teams that have been simultaneously performing genetic studies on psoriasis, found that a genetic variant within what is known as the LCE gene cluster is able to provide protection against the development of psoriasis.

One of the LCE genes' functions is to code proteins that are part of cells located in the outermost layers of skin. These proteins are important for maintaining skin's barrier function.

"Together with the findings from the other two studies," said Dr Liu, "our finding suggests that compromised skin barrier function play a role in the development of psoriasis. This is a very important find, as it advances our understanding of the genetic basis of psoriasis, which in turn is important for early diagnosis and prediction of an individual's risk to the disease".........

Posted by: George      Read more         Source


January 20, 2009, 6:24 AM CT

Providing support to psoriasis patients

Providing support to psoriasis patients
Online support communities appear to offer both a valuable educational resource and a source of psychological and social support for individuals with psoriasis, as per a report in the recent issue of Archives of Dermatology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

"Psoriasis currently affects approximately 0.6 percent to 4.8 percent of the world's population," as per background information in the article. In addition to causing skin and joint problems, psoriasis can also impair individuals' financial status and emotional, physical and sexual well-being. It is estimated that 10 percent of psoriasis patients have contemplated suicide. "As a result, it is a necessity to provide patients with access to psychological support".

Shereene Z. Idriss, B.A., and his colleagues at the Center for Connected Health and Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, assessed perceived benefits and usage of online psoriasis support groups among 260 adults who participated in one of five such groups (average age 40). Patients' disease characteristics and demographic information were also recorded.

Participants were mostly white (75.7 percent), female (60.4 percent) and college-educated (84.3 percent). "A total of 188 (73.7 percent) reported having moderate or more severe psoriasis, and 206 (79.9 percent) rated their current general health status as average or better," the authors write.........

Posted by: George      Read more         Source


December 19, 2008, 5:26 AM CT

Dangerous skin cancer

Dangerous skin cancer
The German Cancer Society has worked out new guidelines for the diagnosis and therapy of cancerous melanomaa disease with unfavorable prognosis. Cancerous melanoma is responsible for 90% of deaths from skin cancer. The incidence has increased 5-fold within the last 30 years and UV radiation is believed to be an important cause. Caucasian populations are most affected.

Claus Garbe of Tbingen University and his coauthors present the treatment of melanoma in the current edition of Deutsches rzteblatt International (Dtsch Arztebl Int 2008; 105[49]: 845-51). Physicians should confirm the diagnosis by histopathology after complete surgical removal of the tumor. The German Cancer Society recommends specific therapys or therapeutic combinations, depending on the thickness of the tumor and its stage. For example, if the tumor has more than a specific thickness, it is recommended that the primary tumor should be surgically removed, together with the sentinel lymph nodes and in combination with immunotherapy. If surgical removal is not possible, radiotherapy is indicated. If there are distant metastases, physicians should perform monochemotherapy.........

Posted by: George      Read more         Source



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Did you know?
Scientists at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center have found that the risk of developing melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, is only partially associated with exposure to ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation, the rays in sunlight that increase in summer and cause sunburn.

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