Malignant melanoma

Malignant melanoma

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Credit: DR P. MARAZZI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: MODEL RELEASED. Malignant (cancerous) melanoma on the waist of a 47 year old woman. A malignant melanoma is a type of skin cancer that arises from the melanocytes, the cells that produce the pigment (melanin) that gives skin its colour. The main cause of melanoma is exposure to ultraviolet radiation in sunlight. It is an aggressive cancer that often spreads (metastasises) to other parts of the body. Treatment is with surgical excision of the melanoma.

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