Melanoma and obesity: Should antioxidant vitamins be addressed?

Life Sci. 2016 Nov 15:165:83-90. doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2016.09.015. Epub 2016 Sep 23.


Melanoma is an aggressive form of skin cancer refractory to conventional therapies. Obesity has reached epidemic dimensions acting as a risk factor for several cancer types, such as melanoma. Several reactive species of oxygen are also involved in melanoma initiation and progression. Low levels of antioxidant content and/or activity in lightly pigmented cells could expose them to an extremely oxidative environment and rise the susceptibility to oxidative damage and consequently loss of cell homeostasis. Despite the knowledge about melanoma biology, pathogenesis and developed therapies, is extremely important to understand the antioxidant modulation of melanoma under an environment of obesity, especially the effect of some natural compounds of the diet, such as antioxidant vitamins A, C and E and selenium in order to establish alternatives to conventional therapies, which are known to be ineffective against melanoma.

Keywords: Melanoma; Obesity; Oxidative stress; Selenium salts; Vitamins A, C and E.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Melanoma / metabolism*
  • Obesity / complications*
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Vitamins / metabolism*


  • Antioxidants
  • Vitamins