II. Physiology

  1. Located in Basal Cell Layer of skin
  2. Melanosome organelles are produced by Melanocytes
    1. Melanosome transferred to Keratinocytes
  3. Melanin (brown pigment) produced within Melanosome
    1. Tyrosine converted to Melanin
    2. Melanin screens out sunlight ultraviolet rays
  4. Hyperpigmentation
    1. Increased Melanosomes
      1. Sun Exposure
      2. Hormonal control
        1. See Hyperpigmentation in Pregnancy
    2. Darker Skin Color in certain ethnic groups
      1. Same number of Melanosomes as lighter skin
      2. Darker skin results from larger Melanosomes
    3. Other factors affecting pigmentation
      1. Skin vascularity
      2. Presence of Carotene
      3. Thickness of Stratum Corneum

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Ontology: Melanins (C0025196)

Definition (CHV) a kind of substance that gives color to skin and eyes
Definition (CHV) a kind of substance that gives color to skin and eyes
Definition (NCI_NCI-GLOSS) A pigment that gives color to skin and eyes and helps protect it from damage by ultraviolet light.
Definition (CSP) amorphous, nonproteinaceous pigment responsible for the brown hue of eyes, skin, hair, various tumors, and certain internal structures including the substantia nigra of the brain.
Definition (MSH) Insoluble polymers of TYROSINE derivatives found in and causing darkness in skin (SKIN PIGMENTATION), hair, and feathers providing protection against SUNBURN induced by SUNLIGHT. CAROTENES contribute yellow and red coloration.
Concepts Biologically Active Substance (T123) , Organic Chemical (T109)
MSH D008543
SnomedCT 59094002
LNC LP15724-5, MTHU007384
English Melanin, Melanins, Melanins [Chemical/Ingredient], melanins, melanin, Melanin (substance)
Swedish Melaniner
Czech melaniny
Finnish Melaniinit
Japanese メラニン, メラニン色素
French Mélanines, Mélanine
Italian Melanina, Melanine
Polish Melaniny
Spanish melanina (sustancia), melanina, Melaninas
German Melanine
Portuguese Melaninas

Ontology: melanocyte (C0025201)

Definition (NCI_NCI-GLOSS) Cells in the skin and eyes that produce and contain the pigment called melanin.
Definition (CSP) dendritic pigment cells of the epidermis that synthesize tyrosinase, and within their melanosomes the pigment melanin is synthesized; they control long term morphological skin color changes.
Definition (MSH) Mammalian pigment cells that produce MELANINS, pigments found mainly in the EPIDERMIS, but also in the eyes and the hair, by a process called melanogenesis. Coloration can be altered by the number of melanocytes or the amount of pigment produced and stored in the organelles called MELANOSOMES. The large non-mammalian melanin-containing cells are called MELANOPHORES.
Concepts Cell (T025)
MSH D008544
SnomedCT 9683001
English Melanocytes, melanocytes, Melanocyte, Melanocyte (cell), melanocyte
French Mélanocyte, Mélanocytes
Swedish Melanocyter
Czech melanocyty
Finnish Melanosyytit
Latvian Melanocīti
Polish Melanocyty
Norwegian Melanocytter
Spanish melanocito (célula), melanocito, Melanocitos
German Melanozyten
Italian Melanociti
Dutch Melanocyt, Melanocyten
Portuguese Melanócitos

Ontology: Melanosomes (C0025213)

Definition (GO) A tissue-specific, membrane-bounded cytoplasmic organelle within which melanin pigments are synthesized and stored. Melanosomes are synthesized in melanocyte cells. [GOC:jl, PMID:11584301]
Definition (MSH) Melanin-containing organelles found in melanocytes and melanophores.
Definition (CSP) granules within melanocytes that contain tyrosinase and synthesize melanin.
Concepts Cell Component (T026)
MSH D020460
English Melanosomes, melanosome, Melanosome, melanosomes
French Mélanosome, Mélanosomes
Swedish Melanosomer
Czech melanozómy
Finnish Melanosomit
Latvian Melanosomas
Polish Melanosomy
Norwegian Melanosomer
Portuguese Melanossomos, Melanossomas
German Melanosomen
Italian Melanosomi
Dutch Melanosomen, Melanosoom
Spanish Melanosomas