An indigenous tribe from Malaysia may help scientists discover why East Asians have light skin but lower skin cancer rates than Europeans.
Europeans have 10 to 20 times higher rates of melanoma than Africans. However, despite also having lighter skin, East Asians have the same melanoma rates as Africans. The reason for this difference can only be explained when the gene mutations for both groups are found.
“By finding the differences, we have the potential to find ways to make people with the European ancestry genes less susceptible to skin cancer,” says Keith Cheng, professor of pathology at Penn State.
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