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Research project

Prediction of metastasis in cSCC

The goal of this project is to develop a novel prediction model that combines high-risk clinical and pathological characteristics with a genetic tumour profile to accurately identify which cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma patients are at high risk of developing metastasis.

What we do

About our project

Identify patients at high risk of metastasis
In the Netherlands 14.000 people annually develop a cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC) and this annually increases with 5%. Although the prognosis of cSCC is generally excellent, a subset metastasizes of whom half dies. Current staging systems are inaccurate to identify which patients are at risk of developing metastasis, and who would consequently benefit from higher intensity surveillance or adjuvant treatment.

In this project we aim to improve current stratification of cSCC patients by developing a stepwise prediction model. The first step is to identify high risk cSCC patients based on clinical and histopathological characteristics. Thereafter risk prediction will be refined based on genomics and transcriptomics.

Our research focus

Prediction of cSCC metastasis
Erasmus MC and SkylineDx collaborate on the development of a new prediction model for metastasis of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. This model includes clinical data (e.g. age, sex, number of prior cSCCs), pathological variables (e.g. differentiation grade) and multi-omics data (RNAseq and DNAseq). These data will be integrated using artificial intelligence techniques to develop a single prediction model.

Funds & Grants

  • TKI Health Holland
  • SkylineDx


Collaborations within Erasmus MC

  • Department of Pathology, including the Pathology Research and Trial Service (PARTS)
  • Computational Biology & Bioinformatics in Immunology Group (CBBI)

Collaborations outside Erasmus MC


  • Risk factors for metastatic cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma: Refinement and replication based on 2 nationwide nested case-control studies. Tokez S, Venables ZC, Hollestein LM, et al. (2022) J Am Acad Dermatol. 87(1):64-71.
  • Cumulative incidence and disease-specific survival of metastatic cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma: A nationwide cancer registry study. Tokez S, Wakkee M, Kan W, et al. (2022) J Am Acad Dermatol. 86(2):331-338

Our team

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