A Message from the President — Late Fall 2014

“Science knows no country, because knowledge belongs to humanity, and is the torch which illuminates the world.”— Louis Pasteur, 19th century chemist and microbiologist

Upon returning from our recent World Congress on Cancers of the Skin in Edinburgh, Scotland, I find this quote from Pasteur to be quite fitting. For four days this September, more than 1,000 doctors, researchers and health professionals from 63 countries gathered in the northern United Kingdom city to share scientific information and collaborate in the fight against skin cancer.

Leading medical researchers from Australia and Israel to India and Tanzania presented the latest findings on every single aspect of skin cancer care—from prevention, detection, and diagnosis to surgery and oncology.

As the incidence of melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers keeps rising around the globe, afflicting millions of people, it is critical that all nations join forces in stemming the disease. The Skin Cancer Foundation has long been in the forefront of such international cooperation. In 1983, the Foundation launched the first World Congress on Cancers of the Skin in New York City. Since then, the biennial meeting has been held in host cities around the world, with thousands of doctors returning to their home countries with invaluable insights and lifesaving information.

While our headquarters is in New York City, we’re committed to spreading skin cancer awareness and prevention messages to people around the world. Our skin cancer information materials, in print and online, are available in eight different languages.

In this current issue of Sun & Skin News, we have distilled just a few of the exciting studies presented at the recent World Congress on Cancers of the Skin to share with you. Our lead story presents some important new research which was made possible by a research grant funded by Foundation donor Dr. Marcia Robbins-Wilf: Dr. Jennifer Powers of Vanderbilt University Medical Center and colleagues examined the unique sun damage risks faced by US soldiers deployed to the Middle East and other sun-intense regions. Another story explores the reasons behind older men’s special vulnerabilities to skin cancer. Additionally, we present new findings that having moles, even benign moles, increases your risk of developing skin cancer; and finally, we present a variety of early recognition strategies that can help you and your doctor discover potential skin cancers at the earliest stages, when they are almost always curable. We hope that the information in these stories will not only help protect the health of you and your loved ones, but may also encourage you to join with us and thousands of others around the world in the battle against skin cancer.

Perry Robins, MD

Published on November 3, 2014