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The melanocortin 1 receptor gene is a main determinant of human pigmentation, and a melanoma susceptibility gene, because its variants that are strongly associated with red hair color increase melanoma risk. To test experimentally the association between melanocortin 1 receptor genotype and melanoma susceptibility, we compared the responses of primary human(More)
The melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), a G(s) protein-coupled receptor, has an important role in human pigmentation. We investigated the regulation of expression and activity of the MC1R in primary human melanocyte cultures. Human β-defensin 3 (HBD3) acted as an antagonist for MC1R, inhibiting the α-melanocortin (α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone(More)
The significance of melanotropic hormones as physiologic regulators of cutaneous pigmentation in humans is still controversial. Until recently, no direct effect for melanotropins could be demonstrated on human melanocytes. Here we present conclusive evidence that alpha-melanotropin (alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone, alpha-MSH) and the related hormone(More)
Cultured epidermal keratinocytes provide an abundant supply of biologic material for wound treatment. Because restoration of barrier function is a definitive criterion for efficacy of wound closure and depends on the lipids present in the epidermis, we analyzed lipid composition of the epidermis in cultured skin substitutes in vitro and after grafting to(More)
Stable closure of skin wounds with engineered skin substitutes (ESS) requires indefinite mitotic capacity to generate the epidermis. To evaluate whether keratinocytes in ESS exhibit the stem cell phenotype of label retention, ESS (n = 6-9/group) were pulsed with 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine (BrdU) in vitro, and after grafting to athymic mice (n = 3-6/group).(More)
The membrane bound melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), and the endothelin B receptor (ENDBR) are two G-protein coupled receptors that play important roles in constitutive regulation of melanocytes and their response to ultraviolet radiation (UVR), the main etiological factor for melanoma. The human MC1R is a Gs protein-coupled receptor, which is activated by(More)
Cryopreservation of cultured skin substitutes is a requirement for establishment of banks of alternative materials for treatment of acute and chronic skin wounds. To determine whether cryopreservation of skin substitutes that contain cultured cells reduces their efficacy for wound closure, cell-biopolymer grafts were frozen, recovered into culture, and(More)
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