Protein, skin cancer link

accreditation
Expression of the blood protein osteopontin may be an independent prognostic marker for melanoma, clinicians report in the journal Cancer.

Dr Mohammed Kashani-Sabet from the University of California, San Francisco and associates analysed osteopontin expression in relation to outcome in 345 patients with melanoma.

They found that higher expression of the protein was associated with increasing tumour thickness, and other factors associated with a poor outcome.

The risk of relapse increased from 32 percent in melanoma patients with no osteopontin expression to 51 percent in patients with some osteopontin expression, the investigators found, and increased osteopontin expression was associated with significantly reduced survival free of relapse.

Ups death risk
Similarly, the risk of death from melanoma increased from 22 percent in patients with low osteopontin expression to 33 percent in patients with high osteopontin expression.

Osteopontin expression also predicted spread of the cancer to the lymph nodes and higher osteopontin expression was associated with higher average numbers of positive lymph nodes.

The risk of lymph node metastasis increased from 8.8 percent among patients with no osteopontin expression to 32.9 percent among patients with osteopontin expression.

"The application of molecular genomics to melanoma is already here," Kashani-Sabet told Reuters Health. "Molecular markers such as osteopontin may help address some of the difficult clinical scenarios that we face today." - (Will Boggs, MD/Reuters Health)

SOURCE: Cancer, January 1, 2008.

Read more:
Cancer Centre
Skin Centre

February 2008

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Eskom has considered continuous load shedding at Stage 2, instead of introducing it when the power system faces a crunch. What are your thoughts?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
I'm all for it - we're going to have power cuts regardless, so we might as well have some stability to better plan our lives
45% - 4713 votes
No thanks! I prefer having periods of no load shedding and we cannot normalise this crisis
55% - 5782 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
18.07
-0.6%
Rand - Pound
19.32
+0.3%
Rand - Euro
17.37
-0.0%
Rand - Aus dollar
11.67
+0.2%
Rand - Yen
0.13
-0.1%
Gold
1,624.34
-1.2%
Silver
18.38
-2.6%
Palladium
2,050.86
-1.1%
Platinum
853.58
-0.6%
Brent Crude
86.15
-5.0%
Top 40
57,290
+0.3%
All Share
63,626
+0.3%
Resource 10
56,215
-0.2%
Industrial 25
79,529
+1.4%
Financial 15
13,982
-1.2%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE