Association of HERV-K and LINE-1 hypomethylation with reduced disease-free survival in melanoma patients

Maurizio Cardelli (Coresponding Author), Remco Van Doorn, Lares Larcher, Michela Di Donato, Francesco Piacenza, Elisa Pierpaoli, Robertina Giacconi, Marco Malavolta, Sivaramakrishna Rachakonda, Nelleke A. Gruis, Anders Molven, Per Arne Andresen, Dace Pjanova, Joost J. Van Den Oord, Mauro Provinciali, Eduardo Nagore, Rajiv Kumar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Aim: To evaluate CpG methylation of long interspersed nuclear elements 1 (LINE-1) and human endogenous retrovirus K (HERV-K) retroelements as potential prognostic biomarkers in cutaneous melanoma. Materials methods: Methylation of HERV-K and LINE-1 retroelements was assessed in resected melanoma tissues from 82 patients ranging in age from 14 to 88 years. In addition, nevi from eight patients were included for comparison with nonmalignant melanocytic lesions. Results: Methylation levels were lower in melanomas than in nevi. HERV-K and LINE-1 methylation were decreased in melanoma patients with clinical parameters associated with adverse prognosis, while they were independent of age and gender. Hypomethylation of HERV-K (but not LINE-1) was an independent predictor of reduced disease-free survival. Conclusion: HERV-K hypomethylation can be a potential independent biomarker of melanoma recurrence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1689-1706
Number of pages18
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • aging
  • disease-free survival
  • DNA methylation
  • HERV-K
  • HML-2
  • LINE-1
  • melanoma
  • prognosis
  • retrovirus
  • transposon

Field of Science*

  • 1.6 Biological sciences
  • 3.1 Basic medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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