Vitamin D and melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer risk and prognosis : a comprehensive review and meta-analysis

Caini, Saverio and Boniol, Mathieu and Tosti, Giulio and Magi, Serena and Medri, Matelda and Stanganelli, Ignazio and Palli, Domenico and Assedi, Melania and Marmol, Veronique Del and Gandini, Sara (2014) Vitamin D and melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer risk and prognosis : a comprehensive review and meta-analysis. European Journal of Cancer, 50 (15). pp. 2649-2658. ISSN 0959-8049

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Abstract

Vitamin D is formed mainly in the skin upon exposure to sunlight and can as well be taken orally with food or through supplements. While sun exposure is a known risk factor for skin cancer development, vitamin D exerts anti-proliferative and pro-apoptotic effects on melanocytes and keratinocytes in vitro. To clarify the role of vitamin D in skin carcinogenesis, we performed a review of the literature and meta-analysis to evaluate the association of vitamin D serum levels and dietary intake with cutaneous melanoma (CM) and non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC) risk and melanoma prognostic factors. Twenty papers were included for an overall 1420 CM and 2317 NMSC. The summary relative risks (SRRs) from random effects models for the association of highest versus lowest vitamin D serum levels was 1.46 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.60-3.53) and 1.64 (95% CI 1.02-2.65) for CM and NMSC, respectively. The SRR for the highest versus lowest quintile of vitamin D intake was 0.86 (95% CI 0.63-1.13) for CM and 1.03 (95% CI 0.95-1.13) for NMSC. Data were suggestive of an inverse association between vitamin D blood levels and CM thickness at diagnosis. Further research is needed to investigate the effect of vitamin D on skin cancer risk in populations with different exposure to sunlight and dietary habits, and to evaluate whether vitamin D supplementation is effective in improving CM survival.