Skin cancers are the most common cancers worldwide. They can be classified in melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC), the latter includes squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and merkel cell carcinoma (MCC). In recent years, the crucial role of non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) in skin cancer pathogenesis has become increasingly evident. NcRNAs are functional RNA molecules that lack any protein-coding activity. These ncRNAs are classified based on their length: small, medium-size, and long ncRNAs. Among the most studied ncRNAs there are microRNAs (miRNAs), long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), and circular RNA (circRNAs). ncRNAs have the ability to regulate gene expression at transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels and are involved in skin cancer cell proliferation, angiogenesis, invasion, and metastasis. Many ncRNAs exhibit tissue- or cell-specific expression while others have been correlated to tumor staging, drug resistance, and prognosis. For these reasons, ncRNAs have both a diagnostic and prognostic significance in skin cancers. Our review summarizes the functional role of ncRNAs in skin cancers and their potential clinical application as biomarkers.

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