Childhood obesity not linked to adult skin cancer risk, study says

Source: News Medical Life Science, April 2024

A recent Scientific Reports study investigates whether genetically predicted childhood adiposity influences the risk of developing skin cancer in adulthood.

Several studies have reported that childhood obesity increases the risk of several types of cancers in adulthood. Although a causal link between body mass index (BMI) and melanoma has been established, no studies have evaluated whether childhood obesity influences the risk of developing basal cell carcinoma (BCC) or cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC) in adulthood.

Several mechanisms have been proposed to contribute to the potential causal link between BMI and melanoma. For example, some studies have suggested that obesity increases the risk of melanoma due to greater body surface area (BSA) that subsequently increases the number of target cells at risk. This hypothesis has been supported by some observational studies indicating that BSA positively correlates with increased melanoma risk.