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Israeli researchers at Tel Aviv U. discover trigger of deadly melanoma cancer


( Israeli researchers at Tel Aviv University (TAU) have identified the trigger that transforms melanoma from harmless non-invasive cells to an invasive killer which accounts for nearly all skin cancer deaths. This will allow scientists to catch the cancer early enough to save more lives.

The discovery was first published in the Molecular Cell journal. The Israeli effort was led by Dr. Carmit Levy of the Department of Human Genetics and Biochemistry at TAU’s Sackler School of Medicine, with the collaboration of researchers from Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Sheba Medical Center, Institut Gustave Roussy, and Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Levy said the research team had to first gain a deeper understanding of the structure and function of normal skin. Melanoma is a cancer that originates in the epidermis— the outermost layer of skin, where it is relatively harmless. But it will eventually invade the lower layer of skin called the dermis, and will then invade the bloodstream and spread throughout the body.


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