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Acral Lentiginous Melanoma (ALM)

Acral lentiginous melanoma (ALM) accounts for approximately 2-8% of all melanoma cases and has a higher incidence in individuals with darker skin tones. Our company is committed to making a meaningful impact in the field of ALM therapy through our diagnostic services, therapy development, and preclinical research.

Overview of Acral Lentiginous Melanoma

Acral lentiginous melanoma (ALM), also known as acral melanoma, is a subtype of melanoma that predominantly occurs in non-sun-exposed areas, such as the palms, soles, and subungual regions. Incidence rates of ALM were similar in men and women, at 1.9 and 1.8 per 1 million person-years, respectively. Unlike other forms of melanoma that are commonly associated with UV radiation exposure, ALM is not linked to sun exposure. It typically presents as a dark-pigmented lesion that may be mistaken for a benign mole or a fungal infection.

Pathogenesis of Acral Lentiginous Melanoma

The precise cause of ALM is not yet fully understood. While UV radiation is a well-established risk factor for other types of melanoma, ALM occurs in areas that are less exposed to sunlight. This suggests that other factors, such as genetic mutations and environmental influences, may contribute to the development of ALM.

Pathways related to acral lentiginous melanoma (ALM).Fig. 1 Representation of main pathways affected in ALM. (Basurto-Lozada P., et al., 2021)

Targets of Acral Lentiginous Melanoma Therapy


Mutations in the BRAF gene, particularly the V600E mutation, have been found in a subset of ALM cases. Targeting the BRAF pathway with inhibitors such as vemurafenib and dabrafenib has shown promising results in trials.


Activating mutations in the NRAS gene have also been identified in a subset of ALM cases. Inhibitors targeting the NRAS pathway, such as binimetinib and trametinib, are currently under investigation as potential therapies.


Mutations in the KIT gene have been detected in a minority of cases of acral lentiginous melanoma (ALM). There has been some promising evidence of the effectiveness of targeting the KIT pathway using inhibitors such as imatinib.

Therapies of Acral Lentiginous Melanoma

  • Systemic Therapy
    Systemic therapy, including chemotherapy and targeted therapy, is used for the therapeutics of advanced or metastatic ALM. Chemotherapy drugs, such as dacarbazine (DTIC), have been historically used, although responses are limited. Targeted therapies that inhibit specific genetic mutations, such as BRAF or KIT inhibitors, have shown promising results in clinical trials.
  • Immunotherapy
    Immunotherapy has revolutionized the therapeutics of melanoma by harnessing the power of the immune system to fight cancer. Immune checkpoint inhibitors, such as anti-PD-1 antibodies (pembrolizumab, nivolumab), have shown remarkable efficacy in ALM. These inhibitors block the interaction between PD-1 on immune cells and PD-L1 on tumor cells, allowing the immune system to recognize and destroy cancer cells more effectively.

Our Services

At our company, we are at the forefront of ALM therapy diagnostics and therapy development. Our cutting-edge diagnostic tests enable accurate identification of specific genetic mutations, such as BRAF, NRAS, KIT, and TP53, that drive ALM. This information helps guide therapy decisions by identifying potential targets for therapy and predicting responses to specific therapies.

Therapy Development Platforms

Animal Models of Acral Lentiginous Melanoma

In addition, our dedicated team of scientists and researchers is actively involved in the development of novel therapies for ALM. Through rigorous preclinical research and animal model development, we strive to identify and validate new drug candidates that target the unique molecular pathways and genomic drivers of ALM.

Xenograft Models
Our company specializes in designing and executing animal studies to evaluate ALM tumor growth, metastasis, and response to interventions. We utilize female NSG (NOD scid gamma) mice, which have proven to be a valuable model for melanoma research. We subcutaneously inject cultured ALM cells into the mice and monitor tumor size and body weight at specified time points.
Optional Cell Lines XYAM, SMYM- PRGP, MMG1, Others
Optional Species Mouse, Rat, Non-human primates, Others

In addition, we also provide other customized animal models to meet diverse needs. If you are interested in our services, please feel free to contact us for more details and quotation information of related services.


  • Basurto-Lozada P., et al. "Acral lentiginous melanoma: Basic facts, biological characteristics and research perspectives of an understudied disease." Pigment cell & melanoma research 34.1 (2021): 59-71.
  • Nakamura Y., and Fujisawa, Y., "Diagnosis and management of acral lentiginous melanoma." Current treatment options in oncology 19 (2018): 1-11.

All of our services and products are intended for preclinical research use only and cannot be used to diagnose, treat or manage patients.

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