Melanotan 2 is a peptide that is also referred to as Melanotan II or MT-2. It is a peptide that has been shown through clinical studies and preliminary research to enhance the protection against harmful ultraviolet, or UV, rays.
The Mechanics of Melanotan 2
Melanotan 2 works in conjunction with the alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone, otherwise known as a–MSH. This hormone is produced within the pituitary gland, which is the pea-sized gland located at the bottom of the hypothalamus at the base of the brain. This particular gland is the base of the endocrine system, and is in charge of regulating, monitoring, and controlling several of the body’s processes, including:
Regulation of blood pressure
Thyroid gland functionality
Regulation of metabolism (that is, the conversion of food into energy)
Water balance via reabsorption
Regulation of body temperature
Specifically, Melanotan 2 interacts with the hormones secreted by the pituitary gland known as melanocortins. These hormones are responsible for the control and regulation of skin and hair pigmentation. This secretion is referred to as melanin. The hormones are prompted into action by the exposure to ultraviolet, or UV, rays; this exposure causes the secretion of melanin, which then manifests itself on the skin. The process in which this is occurred is typically referred to as melanogenesis. The effects of melanogenesis are twofold. Firstly, the release of the melanin from melanocortins causes a darkening of the skin’s pigment. Secondly, the release acts as a natural protective measure, as it safeguards against the exposure to ultraviolet rays, which by extension acts as a safeguard against several of skin afflictions and ailments that result from prolonged exposure to ultraviolet rays, including various types of skin cancers.
According to clinical studies, the a–MSH hormone has a brief half-life lasting only several minutes. This means that its ability to promote the stimulation of melanocortins – and subsequently melanin – is brief and can stop its functionality rather quickly.
The mechanics of Melanotan 2 are such that it works to extend the half-life of the a–MSH hormone. This enables the production of melanin to increase, which would then lead to an enhanced process of melanogenesis and subsequently darker skin. According to tests that have been performed in a clinical setting, it has been determined that Melatonin 2 can increase the type of stimulation that leads to increased pigmentation without exposure to ultraviolet rays. That being said, this manner of stimulation does increase when ultraviolet rays are involved in the clinical research process.
Further clinical studies related to Melatonan 2 have also found links to other aspects of hormonal stimulation, specifically in relation to appetite and libido.
Some of the mechanics that are associated with Melatonan 2 are similar to the peptide Melatonan 1. However, clinical studies have determined that Melatonan 2 tends to stimulate the release of hormones in a faster, more efficient manner.
Melanotan 2 and Skin Protection
The main focus on clinical research in relation to Melatonan 2 has been its ability to potentially illicit less exposure to harmful ultraviolet, or UV rays. Specifically, its study is built around the determination of its role in being an effective way to reduce the likelihood of skin cancer. Even though the rate of hormonal stimulation increases with the presence of ultraviolet rays, clinical studies have demonstrated that the stimulation of malanocortins to produce melanin can occur without the ultraviolet exposure. This, in turn, has the potential to lessen the damage that could be caused through ultraviolet exposure, up to and including certain types of skin cancer. That said, it should be noted that clinical studies also show that the most infamous and deadliest type of skin cancer – malignant melanoma – is not caused by exposure to ultraviolet rays, as the vast majority of reported cases of this form of cancer has an absence of an ultraviolet mutation. Rather, this form of skin cancer is primarily caused by indirect DNA damage.
In addition to this increased level of skin protection, clinical research has shown that there is a link between Melanotan 2 and increased lipolysis, also known as the breaking down of fat. This has translated into the belief that the peptide could be related to an increase in weight loss efficiency.
Potential Side Effects of Melatonan 2
While Melanotan 2’s potential benefit of protection from harmful ultraviolet (or UV) rays is something that has been researched and determined, clinical studies have also linked several negative side effects in relation to the peptide. These negative side effects include:
Flushing of the face
Suppression of appetite
General feeling of lethargy
White skin spots
Appearances of new moles, also known as hyperpigmentation
Spontaneous effects related to libido
According to clinical studies that have compared the side effects of Melanotan 2 with Melanotan 1, the side effects that are in relation to the spontaneous effects concerning libido is the one major difference in negative side effects between the two peptides. These spontaneous effects on the libido associated with Melanotan 2 are in relation to clinical findings which suggest that the peptide is linked to hormonal stimulation related to libido.
Some clinical studies have determined that some of these side effects had a tendency to dissipate over the course of a clinical trial. Other side effects, such as the side effect of nausea or the side effect of facial flushing, lasted throughout the course of the clinical trial.
For Clinical Use Only
Currently, the full effects of Melanotan 2 as they relate to its overall mechanics, benefits, and side effects are still in the clinical testing phase. Any study that is conducted in relation to its usage and effects should only be conducted within the confines of a highly controlled area, such as a laboratory or a scientific research facility. This is especially noteworthy considering the several potentially negative side effects that have been determined through prior clinical research and study.