How does melanocytes produce melanin?

Asked By: Juvencio Ienco | Last Updated: 13th May, 2020
Category: medical health skin and dermatology
4.8/5 (71 Views . 26 Votes)
Through a process called melanogenesis, melanocytes produce melanin, which is a pigment found in the skin, eyes, hair, nasal cavity, and inner ear. This melanogenesis leads to a long-lasting pigmentation, which is in contrast to the pigmentation that originates from oxidation of already-existing melanin.

Click to see full answer


Similarly, how are melanocytes formed?

The melanin produced by melanocytes is of two kinds: dark brown eumelanin and pale red or yellowish phaeomelanin. Both are formed within the melanocytes by the initial oxidation of the amino acid tyrosine with the aid of the enzyme tyrosinase; subsequently their synthetic pathways diverge.

Secondly, do keratinocytes produce melanin? Melanocytes locate in the basal layer and do not keratinize; however, they can produce melanin pigments. Melanin is accumulated in small granules called melanosomes. Keratinocytes stimulate melanocyte functions such as proliferation, differentiation, melanogenesis, and dendritogenesis.

Simply so, how do you stop melanocytes from producing melanin?

Many of these suppress tyrosinase, the main enzyme needed for melanin synthesis. This slows down melanin production and results in lighter skin.

Topical creams or ointments

  1. hydroquinone.
  2. kojic acid.
  3. vitamin C.
  4. glycolic acid.
  5. azelaic acid.
  6. retinoid.

Which gland produces melanin?

It also occurs in the zona reticularis of the adrenal gland. The melanin in the skin is produced by melanocytes, which are found in the basal layer of the epidermis.

37 Related Question Answers Found

What destroys melanin?

Skin cells called melanocytes produce melanin in the body. Bleaching completely destroys the amount of melanin in our skin making it more vulnerable and making those without it more susceptible to ailments such as skin cancer.

How can I increase melanocytes in my skin?

There aren't any studies that prove vitamin C increases melanin production. However, anecdotal evidence suggests vitamin C might increase melanin levels. Eating vitamin C–rich foods like citrus, berries, and leafy green vegetables may optimize melanin production. Taking a vitamin C supplement may help as well.

What stimulates melanin?

A direct consequence of high levels of melanocyte-stimulating hormone is increased production of melanin. As a consequence, the hypothalamus stimulates the pituitary gland to release more adrenocorticotropic hormone to try and stimulate the adrenal glands to produce more cortisol.

Why do melanocytes die?

Vitiligo occurs when pigment-producing cells (melanocytes) die or stop producing melanin — the pigment that gives your skin, hair and eyes color. The involved patches of skin become lighter or white. Doctors don't know why the cells fail or die.

Can melanocytes be restored?


Surgical treatments are less commonly done, and transplant healthy melanocytes from other areas. Both treatments may be difficult and prolonged. The goal is to restore the skin's color by restoring healthy melanocytes to the skin (repigmentation) allowing the skin to regain its normal appearance.

What controls melanocyte activity?

One of the factors that regulates melanocytes and skin pigmentation is the locally produced melanocortin peptide alpha-MSH. Binding of alpha-MSH to its receptor increases tyrosinase activity and eumelanin production, which accounts for the skin-darkening effect of alpha-MSH.

How long does it take to produce melanin?

IMMEDIATE AND TEMPORARY: starts immediately after and lasts 24-36 hours. This skin color is created by the oxidation of the melanin already contained in the cells, and does not provide any protection. EFFECTIVE AND LONG-LASTING: occurs 48 hours after initial exposure, the time needed to produce new melanin.

What is pigment cells?

Medical Definition of pigment cell
: a cell containing a deposition of coloring matter.

What medicine reduces melanin?

Hydroquinone is a depigmenting agent used to lighten areas of darkened skin such as freckles, age spots, chloasma, and melisma caused by pregnancy, birth control pills, hormone medicine, or injury to the skin. Hydroquinone decreases the formation of melanin in the skin.

Is melanin good or bad?


Turns out, you're still susceptible to the risk of skin cancer long after you're exposed to UV radiation. Melanin is a protective pigment in skin, blocking UV radiation from damaging DNA and potentially causing skin cancer. Melanin does protect us, but this research shows it can also do us harm.

What vitamins reduce melanin?

Vitamin C helps to inhibit the enzyme tyrosinase, which helps to prevent melanin production.

Can I take melanin to tan?

Scientists from Massachusetts General Hospital have developed a drug that mimics the effect of sunlight on the skin, thus making you tan without any UV rays. The drug works by tricking the skin into producing the brown form of the pigment melanin - it's been tested on skin samples and mice so far.

Is Skin Whitening possible?

“From a medical perspective, it is not possible to lighten skin permanently, but you can even it out,” Sachdev tells me. In fact, many of Sachdev's and Chandrappa's patients are actually people seeking treatment for problems with other skin-lightening procedures – primarily the use of topical steroid creams.

How can I make my skin white permanently?

Home remedy of lemon juice and honey in equal quantity and apply on the skin to get fair skin. Take half teaspoon of honey with a pinch of cinnamon; apply on your face to get fair skin at home. Apply cucumber juice with lemon juice to lighten your skin. This home remedy is very useful for making oily skin fair.

Why is my skin getting lighter?


Your skin gets its color from a pigment called melanin. If your body makes too much melanin, your skin gets darker. Pregnancy, Addison's disease, and sun exposure all can make your skin darker. If your body makes too little melanin, your skin gets lighter.

How long does it take to lighten skin naturally?

For a skin-lightening mask for dry skin, mix 1 tablespoon powdered milk, 1 tablespoon honey, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, and 2 drops of essential oil. Apply to skin and let sit for 20-25 minutes.

Can we change our skin Colour?

The color of our skin is dependent on the amount of melanin pigment in our body. Deciding to change the color of skin is your personal choice. However, it means that you will be going for something that is unnatural. With that being said, it is possible to get the color of skin changed.