Poly(adenosine diphosphate-ribose) polymerase 1 expression in malignant melanomas from photoexposed areas of the head and neck region

Stefania Staibano, Stefano Pepe, Lorenzo Lo Muzio, Pasquale Somma, Massimo Mascolo, Giuseppe Argenziano, Massimiliano Scalvenzi, Gaetano Salvatore, Gabriella Fabbrocini, Guido Molea, Angelo Raffaele Bianco, Chiara Carlomagno, Gaetano De Rosa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The family of the poly(adenosine diphosphate-ribose) polymerase (PARP) proteins is directly involved in genomic stability, DNA repair, and apoptosis by DNA damage. In this study, we evaluated the role of PARP-1 in melanoma and its prognostic importance. We studied by immunohistochemistry and Western blot analysis PARP-1 expression in a selected series of 80 primary melanoma of the head and neck region. The results were correlated with tumor thickness and patient's outcome. A follow-up of at least 3 years was available. Fifteen cases of benign melanocytic nevi were used as controls. Normal melanocytes showed only scattered, focal nuclear positivity and were considered as negative for PARP-1 expression by immunohistochemistry (score, 0). Thirty cases of melanoma (37.5%) showed nuclear expression of PARP-1 in both radial and vertical growth phases. Western blot analysis showed the presence of a high signal for full-length PARP-1 only in the cases with high immunohistochemical (nuclear) expression of protein (score, ++/+++) in both radial and vertical growth phase. A significant correlation was present between PARP-1 expression in vertical growth phase and the thickness of tumor lesion (P = .014); all but one tumor measuring less than 0.75 mm showed no or low PARP-1 expression. No correlation was found between PARP-1 expression in radial growth phase and tumor thickness (P = .38, data not shown). These data suggest that PARP-1 overexpression is a potential novel molecular marker of aggressive cutaneous malignant melanoma and a direct correlation between PARP-1-mediated inhibition of the apoptosis and biologic behavior of cutaneous malignant melanoma.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)724-731
Number of pages8
JournalHuman Pathology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2005


  • Cutaneous melanoma
  • PARP-1
  • Prognosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Poly(adenosine diphosphate-ribose) polymerase 1 expression in malignant melanomas from photoexposed areas of the head and neck region'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this