Clinical characteristics in early childhood associated with a nevus-prone phenotype in adults from tropical Australia: two decades of follow-up of the Townsville preschool cohort study

Barsoum, Ramez, and Harrison, Simone L. (2020) Clinical characteristics in early childhood associated with a nevus-prone phenotype in adults from tropical Australia: two decades of follow-up of the Townsville preschool cohort study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17 (22). 8680.

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Abstract

Having numerous melanocytic nevi increases melanoma risk. Few studies have enumerated nevi in children and re-examined them as adults. We aimed to determine if childhood nevus-counts predict nevus-prone adults, and further explore the relevance of host-factors and sun-exposure. Fifty-one Caucasian residents of Townsville (19.16° S, Queensland, Australia) had full-body nevus-counts aged 1–6 and 21–31 years-old. Sun-exposure was determined from questionnaires. Children in the upper-quartile of nevus-counts acquired nevi more rapidly than those in the bottom-quartile (13.3 versus 4.7 nevi/year; p < 0.0005). Children sunburnt before 7 years-old acquired more incident nevi by adulthood (238 versus 126, p = 0.003) particularly if sunburn was severe (321 versus 157.5, p = 0.003) or erythema occurred annually (380 versus 132, p = 0.008). Fair-skinned, freckled children with some nevi ≥ 3 mm, solar lentigines, or a family history of melanoma acquired more incident nevi than children without these attributes. Nevus-prone adults exhibit distinguishing features earlier in life (<7 years-old in Queensland) than has been shown previously. In addition to intervening with sun-protection counselling early enough to reduce risk, being able to reliably triage children into high- and low melanoma-risk groups may inform more efficacious and cost-effective targeted-screening in melanoma-prone populations. Further longitudinal research is needed to confirm that these attributes can reliably separate risk-groups.

Item ID: 66643
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1660-4601
Keywords: Childhood, Cohort, Longitudinal, Melanocytic nevi, Melanoma, Prevention, Screening, Sun-protection, Sunlight, Ultraviolet radiation
Copyright Information: © 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
Funders: V.W. Parkes Bequest to James Cook University, The Rotary Club of Thuringowa, Queensland
Date Deposited: 10 May 2021 01:05
FoR Codes: 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4202 Epidemiology > 420299 Epidemiology not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 20 HEALTH > 2004 Public health (excl. specific population health) > 200499 Public health (excl. specific population health) not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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