Is this injectable tanning drug safe to utilize?
The majority of Australians recognize with the Cancer Council’s mottos advising us to “slip, slop, slap”, and that “there’s nothing healthy about a tan”.
Now a controversial injectable tanning agent Melanotan is growing in popularity. How safe is it, and can it secure us from the sun’s damage?
What is Melanotan?
Referred to as “Mel”, “MT” or “the Barbie drug”, Melanotan is a synthetic melanocortin, which is a hormone stemmed from the pituitary gland at the base of the brain that manages development and advancement.
It assists to accelerate the production of melanin, the pigment that soaks up ultraviolet radiation and gives skin its colour. When delivered by injection over the course of just a week, Melanotan has the impact of (semi-permanently) darkening the skin, as though tanned by the sun.
Established in the 1980s by scientists at the University of Arizona, Melanotan is primarily utilized for the treatment of skin conditions including vitiligo and erythropoietic protoporphyria that impact skin look and level of sensitivity (especially to sunshine). By promoting melanin in the skin, Melanotan can help alleviate the signs of these conditions and make it possible for those diagnosed to live a more regular life.
Melanotan’s tanning capability and prospective use as a “natural” photoprotectant (that assists to prevent damage caused by sunshine) has also received much public interest, and led to its appropriation as a way of life drug.
The reasoning behind this trend is that producing tanned skin (by increasing melanin) with very little to no sun exposure could protect people from skin damage, and even possibly lower melanoma threat. More melanin means more protection from UV radiation, and therefore a much healthier (and conveniently, deeper) complexion. In this sense, there is maybe a kernel of reality to the idea of the “healthy radiance”.
Is it safe to use?
Scientific trials of the security and efficiency of Melanotan are continuous, but in 2008 the European Medicines Company approved a mix of the peptide called Scenesse to be marketed for restricted prescription-only usage by those with particular skin conditions throughout the European Union.
There are no released clinical trials of the drug amongst people without these disorders. This means its long-lasting efficacy and security for use in the basic population is unknown.
In Australia, Melanotan usage is unregulated. Although the drug is presently captured in Schedule 4 (prescription only medications) of the Healing Item Administration’s Poisons Standard, no items containing Melanotan are signed up for usage in Australia.
This indicates while there are rumours of some specialists recommending the drug, most practitioners warn versus– and will not recommend– Melanotan for visual or lifestyle functions.
There are currently no population-based studies on Melanotan to show the degree of its use, however, there are reports of its increased off-label usage in the UK.
Most of users source the drug via “underground” online suppliers at expenses varying from A$ 30-50 for a one-month supply, and self-administer the injections at home. Users report a series of brief negative effects consisting of facial flushing, queasiness, momentary freckling and darkening of moles, and in some males, spontaneous erections.
There is a possibility Melanotan may some day present a feasible solution to attaining a “healthy tan” in line with existing western appeal suitables. It also creates brand-new types of danger worrying needle security, disturbing patient-practitioner relationships through unregulated usage, and the subversion of public health messages that groups such as Cancer Council Australia have actually worked for decades to promote.
Melanotan in WikiPedia
Melanotan II is a synthetic analogue of the peptide hormone α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH) that stimulates melanogenesis and increases sexual arousal.
It was under development as drug candidate for female sexual dysfunction and erectile dysfunction but clinical development ceased by 2003, and as of 2018, no product containing melanotan II was marketed and all commercial development had ceased.
Unlicensed, untested, or fraudulent products sold as “melanotan II” are found on the Internet, and purported to be effective as “tanning drugs”, though side effects such as uneven pigmentation (it makes already uneven pigmentation more noticeable), new nevi (moles), and darkening or enlargement of existing moles have been reported and have led to medical authorities discouraging its use. There has been no scientific study into the long term and permanent side effects the use of this peptide may cause.
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