Small molecule modulators of aggregation in synthetic melanin polymerizations

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Oberlin College, 119 Woodland St., Oberlin, OH 44074, USA.
Bioorganic & medicinal chemistry letters (Impact Factor: 2.42). 07/2012; 22(17):5503-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.bmcl.2012.07.027
Source: PubMed


There are numerous potential applications for melanin-binding compounds, and new methods are of interest to identify melanin-binding agents. A portion of the polymerization to eumelanin, the black to brown pigment in humans, is thought to be supramolecular aggregation of nanoparticles derived from dihydroxyindoles. Starting with chloroquine, a known eumelanin-binding compound, the ability of small molecules to influence aggregation in synthetic eumelanin polymerizations was investigated. Twenty-eight compounds were tested, including pharmaceuticals, dyes, aromatics, and amines. Compounds that either accelerate or delay the appearance of macroscopic particles in synthetic eumelanin polymerizations were uncovered.

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