Background: Little is known about the associations of metabolic aberrations with malignant melanoma (MM) and nonmelanoma skin cancer (NMSC).
Objectives: To assess the associations between metabolic factors (both individually and combined) and the risk of skin cancer in the large prospective Metabolic Syndrome and Cancer Project (Me-Can).
Methods: During a mean follow-up of 12 years of the Me-Can cohort, 1728 (41% women) incident MM, 230 (23% women) fatal MM and 1145 (33% women) NMSC were identified. Most NMSC cases (76%) were squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) (873, 33% women). Hazard ratios (HRs) were estimated by Cox proportional hazards regression for quintiles and standardized z-scores (with a mean of 0 and SD of 1) of body mass index (BMI), blood pressure, glucose, cholesterol, triglycerides and for a combined metabolic syndrome score. Risk estimates were corrected for random error in the measurements.
Results: Blood pressure per unit increase of z-score was associated with an increased risk of incident MM cases in men and women [HR 1·17, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1·04-1·31 and HR 1·18, 95% CI 1·03-1·36, respectively] and fatal MM cases among women (HR 2·39, 95% CI 1·58-3·64). In men, all quintiles for BMI above the reference were associated with a higher risk of incident MM. In women, SCC NMSC risk increased across quintiles for glucose levels (P-trend 0·02) and there was a trend with triglyceride concentration (P-trend 0·09).
Conclusion: These findings suggest that mechanisms linked to blood pressure may be involved in the pathogenesis of MM. SCC NMSC in women could be related to glucose and lipid metabolism.
© 2012 The Authors. BJD © 2012 British Association of Dermatologists.