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PPAR Research
Volume 2008, Article ID 503797, 5 pages
Review Article

The Critical Role of PPAR in Human Malignant Melanoma

1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Plastic Surgery, Tübingen University Hospital, Osianderstrasse 2-8, 72076 Tübingen, Germany
2Department of Anatomy II: Experimental Morphology, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Martinistrasse 52, 20246 Hamburg, Germany

Received 28 February 2008; Accepted 21 April 2008

Academic Editor: Dipak Panigrahy

Copyright © 2008 Christian Freudlsperger 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.


The past 30 years have only seen slight improvement in melanoma therapy. Despite a wide variety of therapeutic options, current survival for patients with metastatic disease is only 6–8 months. Part of the reason for this treatment failure is the broad chemoresistance of melanoma, which is due to an altered survival capacity and an inactivation of apoptotic pathways. Several targetable pathways, responsible for this survival/apoptosis resistance in melanoma, have been described and current research has focused on mechanism inactivating these pathways. As PPAR was shown to be constitutively active in several tumour entities and PPAR agonists extent strong anticancer effects, the role of PPAR as a possible target for specific anticancer strategy was investigated in numerous studies. However, only a few studies have focused on the effects of PPAR agonists in melanoma, showing conflicting results. The use of PPAR agonists in melanoma therapy has to be carefully weighted against considerable, undesirable side effects, as their mode of action is not fully understood and even pro-proliferative effects have been described. In the current review, we discuss the role of PPARs, in particular PPAR in melanoma and their potential role as a molecular target for melanoma therapy.