Four melanoma susceptibility loci are reported in two studies published online this weekin Nature Genetics.Melanoma is a form of skin cancer that arises in melanocytes, which are cells that produce pigment. Worldwide, there are approximately 160,000 new cases of melanoma and 48,000 deaths from melanoma every year.
David Bishop, Stuart Macgregor and their respective colleagues conducted independent genome-wide association studies and together identified four genetic regions that are associated with susceptibility to melanoma. David Bishop and colleagues analyzed the genomes of a few thousand individuals with melanoma and identified genetic risk loci at chromosomes 2, 11 and 21. Stuart Macgregor and colleagues also performed a genome-wide scan on a few thousand individuals with melanoma and discovered a genetic risk locus on chromosome 1.