Our Achievements

Over the past 20 years the Dermatology Research Foundation has made some significant breakthroughs, many of which may lead to improved cancer treatments. Here a just a few:

  • Provided the initial evidence that UVA (as well as UVB) causes skin cancer. This discovery has led to the requirement that sunscreens must provide broad spectrum protection against both UVA and UVB.
  • Identified and studied new molecular mechanisms, allowing scientists and doctors to understand better how skin cancers develop and grow.
  • Discovered a new mechanism in the generation of T lymphocyte responses, helping to explain the regulation of immune responses, a key defence against skin cancer and other diseases.
  • Discovered the role of a new gene (Brm) in skin cancer development, providing valuable information for future cancer treatments.
  • Developed a measurement of ultraviolet-induced immunosuppression in humans and identified chemicals to reduce this immunosuppression. This is particularly important for immunosuppressed organ transplant patients, who are at high risk of developing skin cancer.
  • Contributed to the development of imiquimod, a skin cancer drug now in routine therapeutic use in Australia.