The biology of uveal melanomaReport as inadecuate

The biology of uveal melanoma - Download this document for free, or read online. Document in PDF available to download.

Cancer and Metastasis Reviews

, Volume 36, Issue 1, pp 109–140

First Online: 22 February 2017DOI: 10.1007-s10555-017-9663-3

Cite this article as: Amaro, A., Gangemi, R., Piaggio, F. et al. Cancer Metastasis Rev 2017 36: 109. doi:10.1007-s10555-017-9663-3


Uveal melanoma UM, a rare cancer of the eye, is distinct from cutaneous melanoma by its etiology, the mutation frequency and profile, and its clinical behavior including resistance to targeted therapy and immune checkpoint blockers. Primary disease is efficiently controlled by surgery or radiation therapy, but about half of UMs develop distant metastasis mostly to the liver. Survival of patients with metastasis is below 1 year and has not improved in decades. Recent years have brought a deep understanding of UM biology characterized by initiating mutations in the G proteins GNAQ and GNA11. Cytogenetic alterations, in particular monosomy of chromosome 3 and amplification of the long arm of chromosome 8, and mutation of the BRCA1-associated protein 1, BAP1, a tumor suppressor gene, or the splicing factor SF3B1 determine UM metastasis. Cytogenetic and molecular profiling allow for a very precise prognostication that is still not matched by efficacious adjuvant therapies. G protein signaling has been shown to activate the YAP-TAZ pathway independent of HIPPO, and conventional signaling via the mitogen-activated kinase pathway probably also contributes to UM development and progression. Several lines of evidence indicate that inflammation and macrophages play a pro-tumor role in UM and in its hepatic metastases. UM cells benefit from the immune privilege in the eye and may adopt several mechanisms involved in this privilege for tumor escape that act even after leaving the niche. Here, we review the current knowledge of the biology of UM and discuss recent approaches to UM treatment.

KeywordsG-protein signaling YAP-TAZ signaling Immune checkpoint blockers Targeted therapy Molecular classification Adriana Amaro and Rosaria Gangemi equally contributed to the work.

Download fulltext PDF

Author: Adriana Amaro - Rosaria Gangemi - Francesca Piaggio - Giovanna Angelini - Gaia Barisione - Silvano Ferrini - Ulrich Pfeffer


Related documents