Skin Cancer Process Identified

by Malc on February 9, 2011

Cell Stem Cell 6 Aug, 2010 Vol 7, Issue 2

Image by Jun Seita via Flickr

Skin cancer can be a very unpleasant and rapidly growing type of cancer.

Researchers believe they have found one pathway via which some skin cells can become cancerous.

They have found that a powerful “oncogene” called Ras in combination with excessive activity from specific a protein stimulates skin cells to produce a substance called “keratin 15”. This substance tends to encourage cancer.

Understanding the process by which cancer can be triggered is very important because it means that firstly treatments can be applied to stop it happening, and secondly if it has already happened, treatments can be found to stop it.

The full details are reported in the journal Cell Stem Cell.

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