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05-05-2017 | Melanoma | News

News in brief

Adhesive patch assay helps choose suspicious skin lesions for biopsy

medwireNews: An adhesive patch has been devised to help determine whether a suspect lesion should be biopsied for cutaneous melanoma.

The pigmented lesion assay (PLA) collects skin tissue samples, allowing physicians to determine expression of the long intergenic non-protein coding RNA 518 gene (LINC00518) and the preferentially expressed antigen in melanoma gene (PRAME). Expression of these has been found in more than 90% of melanomas, the researchers explain in JAMA Dermatology.

Forty-five dermatologists were asked to evaluate the need for biopsy of 60 pigmented lesions using clinical and dermascopic images alone and together with PLA results.

When PLA results were included, the dermatologists’ mean biopsy specificity increased from 32.1% to 56.9%, and this was accompanied by a significant increase in sensitivity, from 95.0% to 98.6%.

Taking into account PLA results also significantly increased the average clinician accuracy at correctly identifying a need for biopsy from 40.4% to 62.5%; using images alone no dermatologist got more than 70% accuracy, whereas 38.0% achieved above 70% using images with the PLA results.

Laura Ferris, from the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania, USA, and co-authors conclude: “This result may increase the number of early melanomas biopsied and reduce the number of benign lesions biopsied, thereby improving patient outcomes and reducing health care costs.”

By Lynda Williams

medwireNews is an independent medical news service provided by Springer Healthcare. © 2017 Springer Healthcare part of the Springer Nature group

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