Cutaneous melanoma refers to a common skin tumor that is dangerous to health with a great risk of metastasis. Previous researches reported that autophagy is associated with the progression of cutaneous melanoma. Nevertheless, the role played by genes with a relation to autophagy (ARG) in the prediction of the course of metastatic cutaneous melanoma is still largely unknown. We observed that thirteen ARGs showed relations to overall survival (OS) in the Cox regression investigation based on a single variate. We developed 2-gene signature, which stratified metastatic cutaneous melanoma cases to groups at great and small risks. Cases suffering from metastatic cutaneous melanoma in the group at great risks had power OS compared with cases at small risks. The risk score, T phase, N phase, and age were proved to be individual factors in terms of the prediction of OS. Besides, the risk scores identified by the two ARGs were significantly correlated with metastatic cutaneous melanoma. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis demonstrated accurate predicting performance exhibited by the 2-gene signature. We also found that the immunization and stromal scores achieved by the group based on large risks were higher compared with those achieved by the group based on small risks. The metastatic cutaneous melanoma cases achieving the score based on small risks acquired greater expression of immune checkpoint molecules as compared with the high-risk group. In conclusion, the 2-ARG gene signature indicated a novel prognostic indicator for prognosis prediction of metastatic cutaneous melanoma, which served as an important tool for guiding the clinical treatment of cutaneous melanoma.
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