Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Mice give skin cancer clue

25.09.2001


Mice work says keep kids safe from the sun.
© Photodisc


Mouse studies emphasize children’s cancer risk from sunburn.

Serious sunburn in childhood may raise the risk of developing the deadliest form of skin cancer as an adult, research in mice suggests1. The experiments could lead to a better understanding of malignant melanoma and of how and when to protect ourselves from the sun.

"I have my kids wear hats and put sunscreen on like crazy now," says the study’s leader Glenn Merlino, of the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland. The differences between mice and human skin mean that caution is needed in interpreting the results, he says, but they still hold lessons for parents.



Merlino’s team has engineered mice with "the closest thing we see to human skin", he says. Melanocytes, the pigment-producing cells that become cancerous in melanoma, are spread through the rodents’ skin as they are in humans. Normal mouse skin is quite different.

Mice given a sunburn-inducing dose of ultraviolet light at 3.5 days of age began to develop melanomas at around 6 months old. By a year of age, about half of these mice had cancer. Six-week-old mice given the same amount of ultraviolet light did not develop tumours.

The human equivalents of these mouse ages is not yet clear. The team aims to study exposure over a wider range of times to work out when young humans may be most at risk from sunburn.

The dangers of childhood sunburn are well known, says dermatologist Rona Mackie of the University of Glasgow, UK. "We’ve preached for years that young children are particularly vulnerable," she says. The age-related association between sunburn and melanoma contrasts with other forms of skin cancer, in which the risk rises more steadily with overall exposure to the sun.

Mackie believes this mouse model may help discover how ultraviolet light leads to cancer. Sunburn could turn melanocytes cancerous directly, or it might render the immune system unable to destroy cancer cells when they appear later, she says.

Such an understanding might yield therapies for repairing sunburn damage, Mackie adds.

References

  1. Noonan, F. P. et al. Neonatal sunburn and melanoma in mice. Nature, 413, 271 - 272, (2001).


JOHN WHITFIELD | Nature News Service
Further information:
http://www.nature.com/nsu/010920/010920-10.html

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Correct connections are crucial
26.06.2017 | Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin

nachricht One gene closer to regenerative therapy for muscular disorders
01.06.2017 | Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Study shines light on brain cells that coordinate movement

26.06.2017 | Life Sciences

Smooth propagation of spin waves using gold

26.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Switchable DNA mini-machines store information

26.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>