MELANODERM™: AN EPIDERMAL TISSUE MODEL CONTAINING FUNCTIONAL MELANOCYTES.
Organotypic skin models provide a useful, non-animal method of assessing the irritancy and efficacy properties of various cosmetic products. To address the modulation of skin pigmentation, MatTek Corporation has developed MelanoDerm™, a highly differentiated, three-dimensional tissue culture model of human epidermis that contains normal human melanocytes (NHM) and keratinocytes. NHM within MelanoDerm™ exhibit a dendritic morphology, are localised in the basal cell layer, and produce melanin granules which progressively populate the layers of tissue as it is cultured. Over a 4 week period, cultures become increasingly pigmented with retention of normal epithelial morphology. Cultures containing NHM derived from Black donors show more pigmentation than those containing Caucasian derived NHM and both types of cultures are distinctly darker than NHM-free (EpiDerm™) cultures. The topical application of kojic acid, a known inhibitor of melanogenesis, significantly reduced, but did not completely inhibit, melanin production and darkening. These results indicate that this model will be useful for studying melanogenesis, skin pigmentation and other photobiological effects on skin in vitro.
Dendritic morphology, Melanin, MelanoDerm, Melanogenesis, Photobiological effects, Skin pigmentation
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