Primary pulmonary melanoma: a report of two cases

World J Surg Oncol. 2015 Sep 17;13:274. doi: 10.1186/s12957-015-0695-2.


Malignant melanoma is a refractory malignancy with a dismal prognosis. It generally arises from the skin in most cases, and cases of primary pulmonary malignant melanoma are rare and often behave aggressively. We have treated two cases of localized primary pulmonary malignant melanoma using surgical resection. Pulmonary malignant melanomas often metastasize to the brain and liver; one of our cases exhibited metastasis to the cecum at about 8 months after surgery. Because cutaneous melanomas often carry activating mutations in the BRAF gene (V600E), we performed a BRAF mutational analysis using direct sequencing for both of these tumors arising from the lung. However, no BRAF mutations were detected. We detected a p53 mutation, which was thought to be a potential somatic mutation, in one of the two cases using a sequencing panel targeting 20 lung cancer-related genes. Although we also checked the expression of programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) on the surface of the tumor cells by immunohistochemical testing, neither of our two cases expressed PD-L1. Further molecular analyses may uncover the characteristics of primary pulmonary malignant melanomas.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • B7-H1 Antigen / genetics
  • Bronchoscopy / methods
  • DNA Mutational Analysis
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology
  • Lung Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Male
  • Melanoma / genetics*
  • Melanoma / pathology
  • Melanoma / surgery*
  • Middle Aged
  • Mutation / genetics
  • Pneumonectomy
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Prognosis
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf / genetics
  • Skin Neoplasms
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53 / genetics


  • B7-H1 Antigen
  • CD274 protein, human
  • TP53 protein, human
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53
  • BRAF protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf

Supplementary concepts

  • Melanoma, Cutaneous Malignant