Mucosal melanomas are rare, and less is known about the biomarkers of this subtype in comparison to cutaneous or uveal melanomas. Preferentially expressed antigen in melanoma (PRAME) has been studied as a tool for prognostication of uveal melanomas, and immunotherapy against PRAME-expressing tumor cells has already shown promise. Our goal was to retrospectively analyze 29 cases of mucosal melanomas at our institution to determine if any molecular and histopathologic prognosticators could be identified, as well as to study PRAME expression and its association with prognosis. We found that the majority of mucosal melanomas expressed PRAME and a high PRAME expression score predicted a poor prognosis. There was no association between prognosis and the histomorphologic features analyzed, such as presence of spindle cell or epithelioid predominance. BRAF mutations were absent in 16 of 16 cases tested. Pathogenic NRAS mutations were detected in 3 of 11 cases tested and were associated with shorter overall survival compared to those without NRAS alterations, but the presence of NRAS mutations did not correlate with PRAME expression. In conclusion, an increase in PRAME expression and the presence of a pathogenic NRAS were both associated with a worse prognosis in mucosal melanomas.
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Acknowledgements This research received histology assistance from the University of Minnesota’s Biorepository and Laboratory Services program and was supported by the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, grant UL1TR002494. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences. ACN is supported by the American Cancer Society, Clinical Scientist Development Grant, CSDG-18-139-01-CSM.