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Melanin

Skin pigment

 

Information

Melanin is a natural substance that gives color (pigment) to:

  • Hair
  • Skin
  • The iris of the eye

It is produced by cells in the skin called melanocytes.

Melanin also helps protect the skin from the sun.

 

References

Moore KL, Torchia MG. Development of eyes and ears. In: Moore KL, Torchia MG, eds. The Developing Human. 10th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 18.

Young B, O'Dowd G, Woodford P. Skin. In: Young B, O'Dowd G, eds. Wheater's Functional Histology. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Churchill Livingstone; 2014:chap 9.

 
  • Melanin

    Melanin - illustration

    Melanin is the natural substance that gives color (pigment) to hair, skin, and the iris.

    Melanin

    illustration

    • Melanin

      Melanin - illustration

      Melanin is the natural substance that gives color (pigment) to hair, skin, and the iris.

      Melanin

      illustration

    Tests for Melanin

     

     

    Review Date: 8/22/2016

    Reviewed By: Laura J. Martin, MD, MPH, ABIM Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Atlanta, GA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

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