Definition of consensus melanoma subtypes with distinct phenotypes and clinical implications.

 

Matteo Dugo and Marialuisa Sensi

Platform of Integrated Biology, Department of Applied Research and Technology Development, Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milan, Italy.

 

Skin cutaneous melanoma (SKCM) is a highly aggressive disease resistant to conventional treatments and characterized by poor prognosis. Targeted BRAF/MEK inhibitor combination therapies and immune checkpoint inhibitors have dramatically improved survival of metastatic melanoma patients but the extent and duration of response are variable. Independent studies  have reported  gene expression-based classifications of melanoma specimens and cell lines, each  ascribing distinctive biology and clinical significance to the different subtypes. Through meta-analysis of public gene expression, we recently sought to interrelate these classification schemes and defined three consensus transcriptional subtypes. Implications of this consensus subtype classification in terms of prognosis and therapy resistance for patients with cutaneous melanoma will be discussed.