Sarah T Arron

University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States

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Publications (64)322.81 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Background: There are limited data on outcomes in transplant recipients with a history of pretransplant melanoma. Objective: To determine whether pretransplant melanoma is associated with differences in survival or posttransplant melanoma risk. Materials and methods: We evaluated the outcomes of 185,039 US transplant recipients from the Transplant Cancer Match Study. We also evaluated the impact of transplantation on 141,441 patients with melanoma identified in cancer registries. Results: There were 336 transplant recipients (0.18%) with pretransplant melanoma; they had increased risk of melanoma-specific mortality (hazard ratio [HR], 27; 95% confidence interval [CI], 11-64, p < .0001), overall mortality (HR, 1.3; 95% CI, 1.0-1.5, p = .02), and incident melanoma (HR, 5.4; 95% CI, 2.9-9.8, p < .0001) after transplant, compared with recipients without pretransplant melanoma. The 10-year absolute risk difference was 2.97% for melanoma-specific mortality, 3.68% for incident melanoma, and 14.32% for overall mortality. Among the 141,441 patients with melanoma in the general population, 68 (0.05%) subsequently received a transplant. Transplantation increased melanoma-specific mortality, but not significantly (HR, 1.7; 95% CI, 0.61-4.5, p = .32). Conclusion: Pretransplant melanoma is associated with increased melanoma-specific mortality, overall mortality, and incident melanoma after transplant. Nonetheless, the rarity of melanoma-related events supports the current practice for listing transplant candidates with a history of melanoma.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2016 · Dermatologic Surgery
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    ABSTRACT: Cancer and neurodegeneration represent the extreme responses of growing and terminally differentiated cells to cellular and genomic damage. The damage recognition mechanisms of nucleotide excision repair, epitomized by xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), and Cockayne syndrome (CS), lie at these extremes. Patients with mutations in the DDB2 and XPC damage recognition steps of global genome repair exhibit almost exclusively actinic skin cancer. Patients with mutations in the RNA pol II cofactors CSA and CSB, that regulate transcription coupled repair, exhibit developmental and neurological symptoms, but not cancer. The absence of skin cancer despite increased photosensitivity in CS implies that the DNA repair deficiency is not associated with increased ultraviolet (UV)-induced mutagenesis, unlike DNA repair deficiency in XP that leads to high levels of UV-induced mutagenesis. One attempt to explain the pathology of CS is to attribute genomic damage to endogenously generated reactive oxygen species (ROS). We show that inhibition of complex I of the mitochondria generates increased ROS, above an already elevated level in CSB cells, but without nuclear DNA damage. CSB, but not CSA, quenches ROS liberated from complex I by rotenone. Extracellular signaling by N-methyl-D-aspartic acid in neurons, however, generates ROS enzymatically through oxidase that does lead to oxidative damage to nuclear DNA. The pathology of CS may therefore be caused by impaired oxidative phosphorylation or nuclear damage from neurotransmitters, but without damage-specific mutagenesis. Environ. Mol. Mutagen., 2015.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2016 · Environmental and Molecular Mutagenesis
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    ABSTRACT: Advancements in solid organ transplantation successfully extend the lives of thousands of patients annually. The tenet of organ stewardship aims to prevent the futile expenditure of scarce donor organs in patient populations with high mortality risk, to the detriment of potential recipients with greater predicted life expectancy. The development of skin cancer posttransplantation portends tremendous morbidity, adversely affecting quality of life for many transplant recipients. This special article, provided by of members of the International Transplant Skin Cancer Collaborative (ITSCC), will provide the transplant professional with a consensus opinion and recommendations as to an appropriate wait period pretransplantation for transplant candidates with a history of either cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma, malignant melanoma, or Merkel cell carcinoma.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2016 · American Journal of Transplantation
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    ABSTRACT: Figure 1. Heatmap of differentially expressed transcripts between PP and NN skin. Differentially regulated transcripts between PP and NN skin (n = 971) are shown in a heatmap image. The green color indicates high expression levels, and the red color indicates low expression levels. The black bar above the heatmap indicates NN skin, and the purple bar above the heatmap indicates PP skin. Note that the number of up-regulated transcripts is more than the number of down-regulated transcripts in PP. lncRNA, long noncoding RNA; NN, normal skin from healthy controls; PP, psoriatic plaque skin before treatment.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2015
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    Preview · Article · Nov 2015
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    ABSTRACT: Importance Skin cancer, the most common cancer in the United States, is highly associated with outdoor and indoor tanning behaviors. Although indoor tanning has been suggested to be more common among sexual minority (self-reported as homosexual, gay, or bisexual) men compared with heterosexual men, whether rates of skin cancer vary by sexual orientation is unknown.Objective To investigate whether skin cancer prevalence and indoor tanning behaviors vary by sexual orientation in the general population.Design, Setting, and Participants We performed a cross-sectional study using data from the 2001, 2003, 2005, and 2009 California Health Interview Surveys (CHISs) and the 2013 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) of population-based samples of the California and US noninstitutionalized civilian population. Participants included 192 575 men and women 18 years or older who identified as heterosexual or a sexual minority.Main Outcomes and Measures Self-reported lifetime history of skin cancer and 12-month history of indoor tanning.Results The study included 78 487 heterosexual men, 3083 sexual minority men, 107 976 heterosexual women, and 3029 sexual minority women. Sexual minority men were more likely than heterosexual men to report having skin cancer (2001-2005 CHISs: adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 1.56; 95% CI, 1.18-2.06, P < .001; 2013 NHIS: aOR, 2.13; 95% CI, 1.14-3.96, P = .02) and having tanned indoors (2009 CHIS: aOR, 5.80; 95% CI, 2.90-11.60, P < .001; 2013 NHIS: aOR, 3.16; 95% CI, 1.77-5.64, P < .001). Sexual minority women were less likely than heterosexual women to report having had nonmelanoma skin cancer (2001-2005 CHIS: aOR, 0.56; 95% CI, 0.37-0.86, P = .008) and having tanned indoors (2009 CHIS: aOR, 0.43; 95% CI, 0.20-0.92, P = .03; 2013 NHIS: aOR, 0.46; 95% CI, 0.26-0.81, P = .007).Conclusions and Relevance Sexual minority men indoor tan more frequently and report higher rates of skin cancer than heterosexual men. Primary and secondary prevention efforts targeted at sexual minority men might reduce risk factors for, and consequences of, skin cancer.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2015
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    ABSTRACT: Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common form of skin cancer; however, few data are available relating to patients' perspectives and experiences of this disease. This study explored the spectrum of BCC symptoms and their impact by disease stage to determine how BCC affects the overall health-related quality of life (HRQL) of patients. This study comprised a cross-sectional, qualitative approach involving telephone interviews with patients with BCC who had been divided into two groups: group 1 (G1), patients with stage 1, non-advanced BCC (and of superficial or nodular histology); and group 2 (G2), patients with locally advanced or metastatic BCC. Patients were recruited from three clinical sites in the USA based on a separate qualitative interview study (I4J-MC-HHBB [1.3]) over a 10-month period. Techniques in qualitative methodology were used by applying 'open-ended' questions and probing techniques intended to elicit patients' own description of their experiences with BCC. Telephone interviews lasted between 60 and 90 mins. Thirty-four interviews were conducted (G1: N = 13; G2: N = 21). The majority of patients were aged either 55-64 years (32%, N = 11) or 76+ years (32%, N = 11) and were primarily male (82%, N = 28); most (75%, N = 24) patients were actively receiving BCC treatment. Both groups reported similar symptoms, with the most common being red lesions or open sores that failed to heal (41%, N = 14) and cancer-related stress (41%, N = 14). G2 reported more frequent and severe HRQL impact as a result of their cancer condition because most were affected in their daily activities (76%, N = 16) or emotional well-being (71%, N = 15). Cosmetic and functional impacts were relevant and important aspects of HRQL for both patient groups (G1: 31%, N = 4; G2: 48%, N = 10). Patients with non-advanced or locally advanced and metastatic BCC experience disease-related symptoms that affect their HRQL, activities of daily living, emotional well-being, and social and/or leisure activities. Qualitative descriptions of patient experiences can help healthcare providers and caregivers better understand the impact of BCC from the patient perspective. Eli Lilly and Company.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2015
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    ABSTRACT: Solid organ transplant recipients, who are medically immunosuppressed to prevent graft rejection, have increased melanoma risk, but risk factors and outcomes are incompletely documented. We evaluated melanoma incidence among 139,991 non-Hispanic white transplants using linked U.S. transplant-cancer registry data (1987-2010). We used standardized incidence ratios (SIRs) to compare incidence to the general population, and incidence rate ratios (IRRs) from multivariable Poisson models to assess risk factors. Separately, we compared post-melanoma survival among transplant recipients (N=182) and non-recipients (N=131,358) using multivariable Cox models. Among transplant recipients, risk of invasive melanoma (N=519) was elevated (SIR=2.20, 95%CI 2.01-2.39), especially for regional stage tumors (SIR=4.11, 95%CI 3.27-5.09). Risk of localized tumors was stable over time after transplantation, but higher with azathioprine maintenance therapy (IRR=1.35, 95%CI 1.03-1.77). Risk of regional/distant stage tumors peaked within 4 years following transplantation and increased with polyclonal antibody induction therapy (IRR=1.65, 95%CI 1.02-2.67). Melanoma-specific mortality was higher among transplant recipients than non-recipients (HR 2.98, 95%CI 2.26-3.93). Melanoma exhibits increased incidence and aggressive behavior under transplant-related immunosuppression. Some localized melanomas may result from azathioprine, which acts synergistically with ultraviolet radiation, while T-cell depleting induction therapies may promote late stage tumors. Our findings support sun safety practices and skin screening for transplant recipients.Journal of Investigative Dermatology accepted article preview online, 13 August 2015. doi:10.1038/jid.2015.312.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Journal of Investigative Dermatology
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    ABSTRACT: The lifelong immunosuppression required for maintenance of allograft function in organ transplant recipients (OTR) increases the risk of cutaneous malignancies in this population. Prolonged survival posttransplantation further permits the development of late dermatologic complications of iatrogenic immunosuppression, particularly skin cancer. Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (CSCC) is the most common posttransplant malignancy, and in OTR can present as multiple, aggressive, and rapidly metastasizing lesions that are challenging to manage. Due to the high morbidity and potential mortality of CSCC in OTR, close dermatologic surveillance and aggressive treatment are essential. This review will address the challenge of managing posttransplant CSCC in the OTR population with a summary of the current therapeutic strategies in this patient cohort. The management of metastatic CSCC remains challenging, despite promising results from chemotherapeutic agents and novel targeted molecular inhibitors combined with radiation therapy. Ultimately, therapeutic considerations for CSCC in OTR should be determined in a multidisciplinary setting including the dermatologist, the transplant team, and appropriate specialists.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2015
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    ABSTRACT: Voriconazole is a triazole antifungal used to prevent and treat invasive fungal infections after lung transplantation, but it has been associated with an increased risk of developing cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). Despite widespread use, there are no clear guidelines for optimal prophylactic regimens that balance the competing risks and benefits. We conducted a retrospective cohort study of all lung transplant recipients at the University of California, San Francisco, who were transplanted between October 1991 and December 2012 (n = 455) to investigate whether voriconazole exposure affected development of SCC, Aspergillus colonization, invasive aspergillosis and all-cause mortality. Voriconazole exposure was associated with a 73% increased risk of developing SCC (hazard ratio [HR] 1.73; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.04–2.88; p = 0.03), with each additional 30-day exposure at the standard dose increasing the risk by 3.0% (HR 1.03; 95% CI: 1.02–1.04; p < 0.001). Voriconazole exposure reduced risk of Aspergillus colonization by 50% (HR 0.50; 95% CI: 0.34–0.72; p < 0.001), but we were underpowered to detect risk reduction for invasive aspergillosis. Voriconazole exposure significantly reduced all-cause mortality among subjects who developed Aspergillus colonization (HR 0.34; 95% CI: 0.13–0.91; p = 0.03) but had no significant impact on those without colonization. Physicians should consider patient-specific factors that modify the potential risks and benefits of voriconazole for the care of lung transplant recipients.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · American Journal of Transplantation
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    ABSTRACT: NF-κB signaling plays a crucial role in regulating proliferation and differentiation in the epidermis. Alterations in the NF-κB pathway can lead to skin pathologies with a significant burden to human health such as psoriasis and cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC). Caspase recruitment domain (CARD)-containing scaffold proteins are key regulators of NF-κB signaling by providing a link between membrane receptors and NF-κB transcriptional subunits. Mutations in the CARD family member, CARD14, have been identified in patients with the inflammatory skin diseases psoriasis and pityriasis rubra pilaris. Here, we describe that the gene coding for another CARD scaffold protein, CARD11, is mutated in more than 38% of 111 cSCCs, and show that novel variants outside of the coiled-coil domain lead to constitutively activated NF-κB signaling. CARD11 protein expression was detectable in normal skin and increased in all cSCCs tested. CARD11 mRNA levels were comparable with CARD14 in normal skin and CARD11 mRNA was increased in cSCC. In addition, we identified CARD11 mutations in peritumoral and sun-exposed skin, suggesting that CARD11-mediated alterations in NF-κB signaling may be an early event in the development of cSCC. Copyright © 2015 American Society for Investigative Pathology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2015 · American Journal Of Pathology
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    ABSTRACT: Little is known about the use of sirolimus for primary prevention of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) among solid organ transplant recipients (SOTRs). We examined the association between sirolimus exposure and incident SCC risk among SOTRs within Kaiser Permanente Northern California. Using a retrospective cohort of all Kaiser Permanente Northern California members given a diagnosis of SOTR from 2000 through 2010, we evaluated incident posttransplantation SCC risk in relation to sirolimus exposure. Sirolimus use was determined from electronic pharmacy records, and incident posttransplantation SCCs were identified from health plan electronic pathology records. We used extended Cox regression to examine the independent association between receipt of sirolimus and risk of SCC. Among 3539 SOTRs, 488 were exposed to sirolimus and 47 developed an incident SCC. SCC risk was not associated with ever use of sirolimus (adjusted hazard ratio 1.18, 95% confidence interval 0.84-1.16) or cumulative duration of sirolimus exposure (adjusted hazard ratio 2.75, 95% confidence interval 0.84-9.04, comparing long-term users with nonusers). No information was available for some known SCC risk factors, such as skin type and sun exposure. Among a large cohort of SOTRs, sirolimus exposure was not associated with a reduction in incident posttransplantation SCC risk. Copyright © 2015 American Academy of Dermatology, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2015 · Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
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    ABSTRACT: Primary analysis from the pivotal ERIVANCE BCC study resulted in approval of vismodegib, a Hedgehog pathway inhibitor indicated for treatment of adults with metastatic or locally advanced basal cell carcinoma (BCC) that has recurred after surgery or for patients who are not candidates for surgery or radiation. An efficacy and safety analysis was conducted 12 months after primary analysis. This was a multinational, multicenter, nonrandomized, 2-cohort study in patients with measurable and histologically confirmed locally advanced or metastatic BCC taking oral vismodegib (150 mg/d). Primary outcome measure was objective response rate (complete and partial responses) assessed by independent review facility. After 12 months of additional follow-up, median duration of exposure to vismodegib was 12.9 months. Objective response rate increased from 30.3% to 33.3% in patients with metastatic disease, and from 42.9% to 47.6% in patients with the locally advanced form. Median duration of response in patients with locally advanced BCC increased from 7.6 to 9.5 months. No new safety signals emerged with extended treatment duration. Limitations include low prevalence of advanced BCC and challenges of designing a study with heterogenous manifestations. The 12-month update of the study confirms the efficacy and safety of vismodegib in management of advanced BCC. Copyright © 2015 American Academy of Dermatology, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2015 · Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
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    ABSTRACT: Background Psoriasis patients have relatively infrequent cutaneous viral infections compared to atopic dermatitis patients. Increased expression of four antiviral proteins (MX1, BST2, ISG15 and OAS2) has been reported in psoriatic skin and genetic studies of psoriasis have identified susceptibility genes in antiviral pathways.Objective To determine if psoriasis is associated with pervasive expression of antiviral genes in skin and blood.Methods We performed RNA sequencing on skin samples of 18 subjects with chronic plaque psoriasis and 16 healthy controls. We examined the expression of a predefined set of 42 antiviral genes, each of which has been shown in previous studies to inhibit viral replication. In parallel, we examined antiviral gene expression in atopic dermatitis, non-lesional psoriatic skin and psoriatic blood. We performed HIV-1 infectivity assays in CD4+ peripheral blood T cells from psoriatic and healthy individuals.ResultsWe observed significant overexpression of 16 antiviral genes in lesional psoriatic skin, with a greater than two-fold increase in ISG15, RSAD2, IRF7, MX2 and TRIM22 (P < 1E-07). None of these genes was overexpressed in atopic dermatitis skin (P < 0.0001) or non-lesional psoriatic skin. In contrast to the skin compartment, no differences in antiviral gene expression were detected in the peripheral blood of psoriasis cases compared to healthy controls. CD4+ T cells from both psoriatic and healthy patients supported HIV-1 infection at a similar rate.Conclusion Our findings highlight psoriasis as an inflammatory disease with cutaneous but not systemic immune activation against viral pathogens.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2015 · Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology
  • D.R. Raleigh · A. Algazi · S.T. Arron · I.M. Neuhaus · S.S. Yom
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    ABSTRACT: Basal cell carcinoma (BCC), the most common cancer in the United States, is primarily treated with local excision. In some cases, lesion size, location, or extent prevent complete resection. Locally advanced BCC responds to systemic therapy with the Hedgehog (Hh) pathway inhibitor vismodegib, but withdrawal of treatment may result in disease relapse. Here we present a case of locally advanced auricular BCC treated with induction vismodegib and radiation resulting in durable local control and an acceptable level of acute toxicity. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2015 · British Journal of Dermatology
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    ABSTRACT: Background Fungal infections remain a substantial cause of mortality in lung transplant (LTx) recipients, yet no comprehensive consensus guidelines have been established for antifungal prophylaxis and treatment of Aspergillus infection in these patients.MethodsA cross-sectional study surveyed the directors from 27 of 64 (45.5%) active LTx centers in the United States to examine clinical practice variations in Aspergillus prophylaxis and treatment of colonization and invasive aspergillosis (IA) in LTx recipients.ResultsAntifungal prophylaxis increased from 52.3% in 2011 to 77.8% in 2013, with the most common agent being inhaled amphotericin B (61.9%), followed by oral voriconazole (51.9%). A total of 74.1% of centers treat Aspergillus airway colonization, with 80.0% of centers using oral voriconazole. All centers treat IA, with 92.6% using oral voriconazole. The duration of Aspergillus prophylaxis and treatment of colonization or IA varied widely across centers from 3 months to >1 year. A total of 51.9% of centers reported internal practice variations in the treatment of IA. Factors guiding treatment decisions included microbiologic culture and sensitivity (74.1%), ease of administration (59.3%), interaction with other medications (55.5%), side effect profile (51.8%), and center guidelines (48.1%). Although 85.2% of LTx centers recommended routine skin cancer screening for LTx recipients, only 44.4% of LTx centers reported having a dedicated transplant dermatologist.Conclusion Most active US LTx centers currently employ antifungal prophylaxis and treat Aspergillus colonization and IA, although choice of agent, route of administration, and duration of therapy across and within centers continue to differ substantially. The number of transplant dermatologists available among US LTx centers is limited. Overall, a strong need exists for more comprehensive consensus guidelines to direct antifungal prophylaxis and treatment of Aspergillus infection in LTx recipients.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2015 · Transplant Infectious Disease
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    ABSTRACT: Somatic mutations in cancer are more frequent in heterochromatic and late-replicating regions of the genome. We report that regional disparities in mutation density are virtually abolished within transcriptionally silent genomic regions of cutaneous squamous cell carcinomas (cSCCs) arising in an XPC(-/-) background. XPC(-/-) cells lack global genome nucleotide excision repair (GG-NER), thus establishing differential access of DNA repair machinery within chromatin-rich regions of the genome as the primary cause for the regional disparity. Strikingly, we find that increasing levels of transcription reduce mutation prevalence on both strands of gene bodies embedded within H3K9me3-dense regions, and only to those levels observed in H3K9me3-sparse regions, also in an XPC-dependent manner. Therefore, transcription appears to reduce mutation prevalence specifically by relieving the constraints imposed by chromatin structure on DNA repair. We model this relationship among transcription, chromatin state, and DNA repair, revealing a new, personalized determinant of cancer risk. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2014 · Cell Reports