Discovery of four subtypes of melanoma points to new treatment approaches
Melanoma, a relatively rare but deadly skin cancer, has been shown to switch differentiation states -- that is, to regress to an earlier stage of development -- which can lead it to become resistant to treatment. Now, UCLA researchers led by Dr. Thomas Graeber have found that melanomas can be divided into four distinct subtypes according to their stages of differentiation. Cell subtypes that de-differentiated -- meaning they reverted back to a less-mature cell -- showed sensitivity to a type of self-inflicted cell death called ferroptosis.
The research also showed that certain subtypes of melanoma cells could be successfully treated using multiple therapies in combination with ferroptosis-inducing drugs.