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ACS Nano. 2019 Sep 16. doi: 10.1021/acsnano.9b02160. [Epub ahead of print]

Artificial Allomelanin Nanoparticles.

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Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry , University of California, San Diego , La Jolla , California 92093 , United States.


Allomelanin is a type of nitrogen-free melanin most commonly found in fungi. Its existence enhances resistance of the organisms to environmental damage and helps fungi survive harsh radiation conditions such as those found on spacecraft and inside contaminated nuclear power plants. We report the preparation and characterization of artificial allomelanin nanoparticles (AMNPs) via oxidative oligomerization of 1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene (1,8-DHN). We describe the resulting morphological and size control of AMNPs and demonstrate that they are radical scavengers. Finally, we show that AMNPs are taken up by neonatal human epidermal keratinocytes and packaged into perinuclear caps where they quench reactive oxygen species generated following UV exposure.


DHN melanin; allomelanin; radiation protection; radical scavenging activity; synthetic melanin


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