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Med Hypotheses. 2010 Aug;75(2):162-8. doi: 10.1016/j.mehy.2010.02.011. Epub 2010 Mar 1.

Multifunctional Merkel cells: their roles in electromagnetic reception, finger-print formation, Reiki, epigenetic inheritance and hair form.

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1
Department of Histology and Embryology, School of Medicine, Gulhane Military Medical Academy, 06018-Etlik Ankara, Turkey. mkirmak@gata.edu.tr

Abstract

Merkel cells are located in glabrous and hairy skin and in some mucosa. They are characterized by dense-core secretory granules and cytoskeletal filaments. They are attached to neighboring keratinocytes by desmosomes and contain melanosomes similar to keratinocytes. They are excitable cells in close contact with sensory nerve endings but their function is still unclear. In this review, following roles are attributed for the first time to the Merkel cells: (1) melanosomes in Merkel cells may be involved in mammalian magnetoreception. In this model melanosome as a biological magnetite is connected by cytoskeletal filaments to mechanically gated ion channels embedded in the Merkel cell membrane. The movement of melanosome with the changing electromagnetic field may open ion channels directly producing a receptor potential that can be transmitted to brain via sensory neurons. (2) Merkel cells may be involved in finger-print formation: Merkel cells in glabrous skin are located at the base of the epidermal ridges the type of which defines the finger-print pattern. Finger-print formation starts at the 10th week of pregnancy after the arrival of Merkel cells. Keratinocyte proliferation and the buckling process observed in the basal layer of epidermis resulting in the epidermal ridges may be controlled and formed by Merkel cells. (3) Brain-Merkel cell connection is bi-directional and Merkel cells not only absorb but also radiate the electromagnetic frequencies. Hence, efferent aspects of the palmar and plantar Merkel nerve endings may form the basis of the biofield modalities such as Reiki, therapeutic touch and telekinesis. (4) Adaptive geographic variations such as skin color, craniofacial morphology and hair form result from interactions between environmental factors and epigenetic inheritance system. While environmental factors produce modifications in the body, they simultaneously induce epigenetic modifications in the oocytes and in this way adaptive changes could be passed onto the next generations. Merkel cells are multisensorial cells that can receive almost all environmental stimuli including electromagnetic and ultraviolet radiations, temperature, humidity and food type and they seem to transfer the environmental information to oocytes by affecting nuclear receptors in oocytes. (5) Hair form is categorized as straight, wavy and spiral. Merkel cells found at the bulge region of hair follicles may determine the hair form with their different paracrine secretions related to hair cycle producing variations between populations. In conclusion, Merkel cells are multifunctional cells which may close the gap between orthodox medicine and complementary medicine such as acupuncture and Reiki.

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PMID:
20189724
DOI:
10.1016/j.mehy.2010.02.011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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