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Dr Veronique Bataille discusses the genetic risk for skin cancer

The BBC recently published an article on the genetic risk for skin cancer. Here Dr Veronique Bataille, Consultant Dermatologist at The Medical Chambers Kensington, discusses this article.

"This study is extremely interesting. We know that the POP1 gene is important in controlling telomere length, which is linked to cancer and ageing. My team were first to prove a link between melanoma risk and longer telomeres, which are more likely to be present in individuals with lots of moles. As longer telomeres are linked with longevity, patients with lots of moles may live longer but this benefit is potentially offset by an increased risk of melanoma.

Global studies have since shown that melanoma patients have on average longer telomeres compared to controls and the POP1 gene is one of the genes involved in regulating telomere length. However, mutations are not common. If you have a family history of melanoma or cancer and lots of large moles I would advise you to have regular a check-up."

Click here to see the full article published by the BBC.