The characterization of the molecular mechanisms involved in development and progression of melanoma could be helpful to identify the molecular profiles underlying aggressiveness, clinical behavior, and response to therapy as well as to better classify the subsets of melanoma patients with different prognosis and/or clinical outcome. Actually, some aspects regarding the main molecular changes responsible for the onset as well as the progression of melanoma toward a more aggressive phenotype have been described. Genes and molecules which control either cell proliferation, apoptosis, or cell senescence have been implicated. Here we provided an overview of the main molecular changes underlying the pathogenesis of melanoma. All evidence clearly indicates the existence of a complex molecular machinery that provides checks and balances in normal melanocytes. Progression from normal melanocytes to malignant metastatic cells in melanoma patients is the result of a combination of down- or up-regulation of various effectors acting on different molecular pathways.