Three scientists, principal investigator Dayanand Agsar, co-investigator M. B. Sulochana and research scholar D. N. Madhusudhan, of Gulbarga University made a major breakthrough in simplifying the production of the melanin.
The team of scientists derived the water-soluble melanin from a new micro organism Tyrosinase from Actino bacterium.
At present, the melanin being used in the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry is either derived from chemical formulations or derived from micro-organisims other than Tyrosinase and is insoluble in water.
The three scientists worked under the major research project funded by the Department of Biotechnology of the Union government.
The trio’s findings were also published in the prestigious Biomed Research International in April 2014 and the Journal of Cluster Sciences of the Springer publications in March 2014.
Melanin is a pigment produced in the skin of almost all organisms on earth. It is produced by the oxidation of the amino acid tyrosine, followed by polymerization. There are three basic types of melanin, viz., Eumelanin, Pheomelanin and Neuromelanin.
It is used widely by pharmaceutical companies for treatment of a type of skin cancer, melanoma. It is also widely used in the cosmetics industry in the production of Skin Protection Factor (SPF) creams.
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Who: Soluble melanin