Document Detail

Melatonin: a hormone, a tissue factor, an autocoid, a paracoid, and an antioxidant vitamin.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  12485375     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Melatonin, a derivative of an essential amino acid, tryptophan, was first identified in bovine pineal tissue and subsequently it has been portrayed exclusively as a hormone. Recently accumulated evidence has challenged this concept. Melatonin is present in the earliest life forms and is found in all organisms including bacteria, algae, fungi, plants, insects, and vertebrates including humans. Several characteristics of melatonin distinguish it from a classic hormone such as its direct, non-receptor-mediated free radical scavenging activity. As melatonin is also ingested in foodstuffs such as vegetables, fruits, rice, wheat and herbal medicines, from the nutritional point of view, melatonin can also be classified as a vitamin. It seems likely that melatonin initially evolved as an antioxidant, becoming a vitamin in the food chain, and in multicellular organisms, where it is produced, it has acquired autocoid, paracoid and hormonal properties.
Dun-Xian Tan; Lucien C Manchester; Rüdiger Hardeland; Silvia Lopez-Burillo; Juan C Mayo; Rosa M Sainz; Russel J Reiter
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of pineal research     Volume:  34     ISSN:  0742-3098     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Pineal Res.     Publication Date:  2003 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2002-12-17     Completed Date:  2003-07-11     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8504412     Medline TA:  J Pineal Res     Country:  Denmark    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  75-8     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Cellular and Structural Biology, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX 78229-3900, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Melatonin / physiology*
Pineal Gland / metabolism
Receptors, Cell Surface / metabolism
Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear / metabolism
Receptors, Melatonin
Grant Support
T32AG00165-13/AG/NIA NIH HHS
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Receptors, Cell Surface; 0/Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear; 0/Receptors, Melatonin; 73-31-4/Melatonin

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