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Some skin cancers may start in hair follicles

from NYU Langone Health / NYU School of Medicine via Science Daily

Some of the deadliest skin cancers may start in stem cells that lend color to hair, and originate in hair follicles rather than in skin layers, a new study finds. Hair follicles are complex organs that reside within skin layers. It is there that immature pigment-making cells develop cancer-causing genetic changes — and in a second step — are exposed to normal hair growth signals, say the study authors. Past models of the disease had argued that sunlight (e.g., ultraviolet radiation) was a major risk factor for melanoma — but current work argues that the triggers are always there in normal follicles. more

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