Aggressive Melanoma in patients with CLL

It appears that patients with a history of Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL) are at a higher risk of developing Malignant Melanoma. If they do develop this skin cancer, they tend to have more aggressive disease than their non-CLL counterparts, with a higher mortality rate. This may be related to genetic aberrations common to both CLL and Malignant Melanoma. They include genetic aberrations of P53 gene and proto-oncogene B-Cell Lymphoma- 2 (Bcl-2).

It is therefore important that patients with CLL be closely monitored for melanoma and take the necessary sun-protective measures. Further, even when diagnosed with early stage Malignant Melanoma, these individuals may need aggressive local intervention.