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Dermatology Research and Practice
Volume 2010 (2010), Article ID 360136, 13 pages
Review Article

Genetics of Uveal Melanoma and Cutaneous Melanoma: Two of a Kind?

1Department of Ocular Oncology, The Rotterdam Eye Hospital, The Netherlands
2Department of Clinical Genetics, Erasmus Medical Center, P.O. Box 2040, 3000 CA Rotterdam, The Netherlands
3Department of Ophthalmology, Erasmus Medical Center, P.O. Box 70030, 3000 LM Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Received 23 December 2009; Accepted 15 March 2010

Academic Editor: Keith Hoek

Copyright © 2010 Thomas van den Bosch et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Cutaneous melanoma and uveal melanoma both derive from melanocytes but show remarkable differences in tumorigenesis, mode of metastatic spread, genetic alterations, and therapeutic response. In this review we discuss the differences and similarities along with the genetic research techniques available and the contribution to our current understanding of melanoma. The several chromosomal aberrations already identified prove to be very strong predictors of decreased survival in CM and UM patients. Especially in UM, where the overall risk of metastasis is high (45%), genetic research might aid clinicians in selecting high-risk patients for future systemic adjuvant therapies.