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The University of California, San Diego (UCSD), has announced the opening of the first clinic in the San Diego region dedicated to mapping and monitoring pre-cancerous moles. The mission of UCSD's Pigmented Lesion and Skin Cancer Clinic, under the direction Richard L. Gallo, MD, PhD, chief, division of dermatology, is to provide a high level of specialized care for patients with melanoma or those with the potential for developing melanoma.
SkinMedica, a line of physician-only skin care products, has provided a $100,000 philanthropic donation to help launch the clinic and is committing a $1 donation from the sale of every SkinMedica sunscreen product sold globally to fund skin cancer research and detection.
"There is a great need for this service in San Diego and we are happy to bring this long-awaited project to our community," said Gallo. "Melanoma, when caught early, is 90% curable. Dermatology is at the front line of this battle. It is our responsibility to diagnose early."
"Richard Gallo is a scientist and physician who combines state-of-the-art investigation and dedication to his specialty with outstanding patient care. He has given us so many 'firsts' in skin biology, and now the first pigmented lesion screening clinic here in San Diego," says Mary Fisher, president and CEO, SkinMedica. "Photodamage from sun exposure is not just about aging and appearance, which is at the heart of our work at SkinMedica, but about cancer risk. We are honored to join Dr. Gallo and the team at UCSD in bringing this life-saving resource forward."
Skin cancer is the most common of all cancers and accounts for nearly half of all cancers in the United States according to the American Cancer Society. More than 1 million cases of nonmelanoma skin cancer are found in this country each year. According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common form of skin cancer in the United States and the world, and the number of cases continue to rise due in large part to unprotected exposure to the harmful rays of the sun. Melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, is the most common form of cancer in young adults (25-29) and the second most common form in adolescents and young adults (15-29) according to the American Melanoma Foundation.