“High Melatonin Milk”- Milk with Intrinsic Health Benefit

Richa Singh, Priyanka Singh Rao


Melatonin C13H16N2O2 (molecular weight: 232) or N-acetyl-5-methoxytryptamine, is chemically an indoleamine and derived from the essential amino acid tryptophan. It is a hormone and due to secretion from pineal gland, it is also called as active pineal factor. Its IUPAC name is N-[2-(5-methoxy-1H-indol-3-yl)ethyl] acetamide. The indole ring acts as the chromophore showing maximum absorbance at 223 nm, and the functional groups contribute to its fluorescence property. Lerner et al. 1959 reported that extract from beef pineal gland are able to lighten frog’s skin by reversing the darkening effect of melanocyte stimulating hormone and therefore, named this compound as “melatonin” since it caused aggregation of melanin granules. Melatonin hormone is more effective and active when compared to other hormones like adrenaline and nor-adrenaline (100 times), triiodothyronine (200 times), and serotonin (5000 times) in preventing darkening of frog skin by contracting melanophores. It is a white powder having melting point of 117°C. It is an amphiphilic molecule (having solubility in both water and lipid) which facilitates its movement across the cell membrane and various body fluids and makes melatonin a prominent molecule in almost all tissues of mammals.


Keywords: Melatonin, tryptophan, hormone of darkness

Cite this Article

Richa Singh, Priyanka Singh Rao. “High Melatonin Milk” - Milk with Intrinsic Health Benefit. Research & Reviews: Journal of Dairy Science and Technology. 2016; 5(1): 13–16p.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.37591/rrjodst.v5i1.486


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