Adult and Neonatal Human Epidermal Melanocytes (NHEM) are the pigment producing cells located in the epidermal layers of all mammalian skin. The function of the melanocyte is to produce melanin, the pigment that gives skin its color. Melanin protects skin from UV damage. Skin is comprised of 2 main layers, the epidermis and the dermis. The epidermis is made of multiple keratinocyte layers. Melanocytes reside in the basal layer of the epidermis. The stellar or dendritic melanocyte morphology allows the melanocyte cell body to reside in the basal layer of the epidermis while the dendrites associate with the keratinocytes in the upper layers of the epidermis. This association allows the melanocyte to transport melanin from the cell body through the dendrites and into the keratinocytes resulting in the coloration of skin.
There are 2 main areas of melanocyte research - cosmetic and medical. Cosmetic studies center focus on the ability to change color of the skin. Medical research often centers on melanoma as well as various dermatological diseases or related disorders like albinism and vitiligo, hormonal treatments, thyroid conditions, Psoriasis, burns and scars.
Our Cryopreserved Normal Human Epidermal Melanocytes are guaranteed through 8 population doublings, express Mel-5 and L-Dopa conversion to melanin. All cells test negative for mycoplasma, bacteria, yeast, and fungi. HIV-1, hepatitis B and hepatitis C are not detected for all donors and/or cell lots. A Certificate of Analysis is provided for each cell lot purchased.
Note: Melanocytes are extremely sensitive to over trypsinization. Use Lonza's Trypsin/EDTA Solution (CC-5012) and dilute 1:1 with Versene®(17-711E) prior to use.