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Activation of the MAPK pathway in malignant melanoma can be independent of BRAF T1799A mutation


The mutated BRAF gene is one of the potential activators of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathway by phosphorylating extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK). The correlations of BRAF V600E and ERK activation in 20 malignant melanomas (MMs) and 21 subsequently paired metastases were analyzed. Phosphorylated ERK (pERK) expression was found in 84% of primary MMs and in all 19 metastases analyzed. BRAF mutation was concordant in only 60% of primary MMs and metastases of the same patient. The BRAF mutation did not correlate with pERK expression. Activation of the MAPK pathway can thus occur through signaling pathways operating independently of BRAF T1799A (Yazdi, A.S. et al. Eur J Dermatol 2010, 20(5): 575).

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