Sarah I. Estrada, M.D., FCAP  Laboratory Director Affiliated Dermatology®

Melanoma: Gene Profile Test Can Help Pathologists Identify Difficult-To-Diagnose Lesions Interview with:

Sarah I. Estrada, M.D., FCAP  Laboratory Director Affiliated Dermatology®

Dr. Estrada

Sarah I. Estrada, M.D., FCAP 
Laboratory Director
Affiliated Dermatology® What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: As a dermatopathologist who makes diagnoses on lesions that may be melanoma, I’m faced with the reality that my accurate interpretation of biopsy tissue is key for the patient to be treated most effectively. Often histopathological evaluation is straightforward but not as often as I would like.

The study presented here offers a new test that can be used in conjunction with my evaluation to determine if a questionable lesion is in fact melanoma. The test was developed to take into account the gene expression of the lesion which may factor in characteristics that I cannot visually observe. The test was validated and has shown very promising accuracy metrics. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Readers in the pathology field can take away a reassurance in knowing that research and development is making strides in offering state of the art testing that was not feasible even five years ago. This allows for better patient treatment and paves the way for additional efforts in this area. I would encourage dermatopathologists, dermatologists and pathologists who interpret melanocytic skin biopsies to consider adding the test to their workflow when faced with ambiguous lesions. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?

Response: As clinicians and scientists, there is always additional information desired.
Castle Biosciences, Inc. is focused on providing actionable test results, so it is important to
continue to analyze how clinicians use DiffDx-Melanoma test results to alter patient
management plans. Clinicians can register their practice and samples with Castle to
monitor over time and continue to provide us with valuable information. Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: After working as a consultant with Castle Biosciences, Inc. for over five years, I am impressed by their vision, evidenced by an expanding portfolio of clinically impactful products. I continue to look forward to being involved in their pipeline endeavors. 


Development and Validation of aDiagnostic 35-Gene Expression Profile Test for Ambiguous or Difficult-To-Diagnose Suspicious Pigmented Skin Lesions
Sarah I. Estrada, MD et al
SKIN: The Journal of Cutaneous Medicine
Published: Nov 17, 2020




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Last Updated on November 19, 2020 by Marie Benz MD FAAD