MSH – Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormones

MSH: Also known as: a-MSH,  a-melanocyte stimulating hormone, alpha-melanotropin and alpha-melanocortin.

Melanocyte-stimulating hormone is a group of peptide hormones produced by the pituitary gland, the hypothalamus and in the skin cells.

What are melanocytes?
  • Melanocytes are cells in our skin that produce melanin, and melanin is the skin pigment we have to thank for the colour of our skin, be it of a fair complexion, olive or dark.
  • Melanocytes are located on the lowest level of the top layer of one’s skin.
  • Darker-skinned people have more melanin than those with fair complexions.
  • Production of skin pigment is regulated by a peptide called¬†melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH).
  • Melanocytes produce and store melanin within melanosomes upon secretion of MSH. This is called melanogenesis.
  • Melanogenesis is a process involving cascades of protein activations.
  • The pigment gets moved from the melanocytes by melanosomes. Travelling to the long tendrils of the cells called dendrites the melanin gets secreted into neighbouring keratinocytes.
  • This process of tanning creates a streak-free tan. No scrubbing off orange skin or strange tan lines, an overall even tan that in turn protects your skin from over exposure to the sun.
melanin and melanocyte stimulating hormone
How does melanogenesis produce a tan?

  • Skin is exposed to UV-B rays
  • The melanocytes then stimulate higher levels of melanin to be produced.
  • The resulting tanned skin protects the skin much more readily from DNA photodamage.
  • Do realise that there is still risk in obtaining a tan this way, whilst you are in the development stages. The body must be given the time to create pigment if there is none when starting off with the tanning peptide. Slow and cautiously is the way you should approach the development of your base tan. Post-tanning, the skin will be more able to protect itself from UV damage.
The Role of MSH Hormone
  • Tanning and Pigmentation – Skin, hair and eyes
    Specialised skin cells called melanocytes produce a pigment referred to as melanin.
  • Protecting Skin from¬†UV damage.
    Melanin protects cells from DNA Damage or Melanoma
  • Appetite and Fat Storage
    Aids in the control of the appetite.
    Melanocyte Stimulating Hormone (MSH) suppresses appetite by acting on receptors in the hypothalamus in the brain. This effect is enhanced by leptin hormone.
  • Anti- inflammatory
    Melanocyte Stimulating Hormone (MSH) influences the release of hormone aldosterone which controls salt and water balance in the body
The Suns Ultraviolet Rays

Ultraviolet A

  • long-wave rays
  • least destructive
  • creates short lived superficial tan
  • doesn‚Äôt cause melanocytes to release more melanin
  • darkens existing melanin only
  • UVA does single strand breakage

Ultraviolet B

  • shortwave rays
  • Type B rays
  • More DNA damage
  • melanocytes release more melanin to protect the body
  • body darkens faster when exposed to UVA beams
  • UVB does double-strand breakage and causes non-functional bonds


  • blocked by the ozone

For Safe Sun Exposure

Get a healthy looking tan without scorching, itching or burning.

MSH Stimulating Tanning Injections ‚Äď Increasing your ability to produce melanin.

What role does MSH tanning injection play in the production of melanin?

First synthesised at the University of Arizona, scientists discovered the use of a ‚Äútanning peptide‚ÄĚ when investigating possible ways to treat skin cancer. The hypothesis was that by inducing the body‚Äôs natural pigmentary system through the process of melanogenesis, a protective tan could be produced before UV exposure, thereby reducing the potential for skin damage.

With just a little UV exposure, the release of a-MSH stimulates a natural increase in the production of melanin from the melanocytes in the skin. Use of the tanning peptide provides more a-MSH which results in more melanin being produced and greater tanning potential (skin pigmentation) regardless of your skin type.

Clinical trials have shown that use of the tan peptide may hold the potential to promote melanogenesis, with minimal side effects.

The primary role of melanogenesis is to protect the hypodermis, which is the layer under the skin from the UV-B light that causes damage. How it works is that it absorbs all of the UV-B light, blocking its passage into the skin layer.

Stimulation of the skins natural pigmentary system results in a protective tan with minimal UV exposure
The release of a-MSH (melanocyte-stimulating hormone) increases production of melanin from skin cells with minimal to no side effects (THIS MEANS YOU GET THE TAN WITHOUT THE BURNING, PEELING AND MELANOMA)
This process is called melanogenesis and its role is to protect the hypodermis which is the layer directly under the skin that UV-B has the potential to absorb and pass through the damage into further skin layers below.
A side effect many find to be a bonus in using the tanning peptide is the appetite suppression and resulting weight loss
Another positive side effect is the peptide’s ability to increase libido in both male and female subjects.
Anti-Inflammatory  РSalt and water regulation is also a bonus due to the hormone aldosterone which gets released
Promote the production of melanin and develop a healthy looking tan.