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Melanocyte Development and Pigmentation

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Human Skin is made up of two main layers, the Epidermis, which is described as a Stratified Squamous Epithelium mainly consisting of Keratinocytes, and the Dermis, an underlying layer of Vascularized Connective Tissue. Melanocytes reside at the junction of the Dermis and the Epidermis. Mature Melanocytes form long Dendritic processes that ramify among the neighboring Keratinocytes. Melanocytes are well known for their role in Skin pigmentation, and their ability to produce and distribute Melanin has been studied extensively. Melanin is produced in Melanosomes, specialized organelles that are translocated from the center of the Melanocyte cytoplasm to the tip of its Dendrites. The Dendrites are then involved in the transfer of the Melanosomes to the Keratinocytes. In Animals there are two [...]


1.Melanin pigmentation in mammalian skin and its hormonal regulation.
Slominski A, Tobin DJ, Shibahara S, Wortsman J.
Physiol Rev. 2004 Oct;84(4):1155-228.
2.Involvement of microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) in expression of human melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R).
Aoki H, Moro O.
Life Sci. 2002 Sep 20;71(18):2171-9.
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