What Is Melatonin And Why Is It So Important?

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Welcome to my blog “What Is Melatonin And Why Is It So Important?”.

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What Is Melatonin?

Melatonin is remarkably functionally diverse with actions as an antioxidant, circadian rhythm regulator, anti-inflammatory and immuno-regulating molecule, and as an anti-cancer agent.

It has been hypothesised that the initial and primary function of melatonin in photosynthetic cyanobacteria, which appeared on Earth 3.5-3.2 billion years ago, was as an antioxidant.

Melatonin probably evolved more than 2.5 billon years ago, likely in purple nonsulfur bacteria, presumably in Rhodospirillum rubrum, to protect them from an oxidizing environment that was a consequence of increasing atmospheric oxygen concentrations associated with the Great Oxygen Event (the Oxygen Catastrophe). These melatonin-producing bacteria were subsequently phagocytized by eukaryotes, a process referred to as endosymbiosis, where they eventually evolved into mitochondria. Because of this, we have speculated that mitochondria in all eukaryotic cells may have retained the ability to produce melatonin; if so, all tissues in multicellular organisms generate melatonin for their own use

There is credible evidence to suggest that melatonin should be classified as a mitochondria-targeted antioxidant.

The pineal gland, a part of our brain, synthesises melatonin in a circadian fashion, with nighttime darkness being a requirement for maximal production; because of this, it is referred to as the chemical expression of darkness.

Why Is It So Important?

As the image for this blog demonstrates it may protect against:

  • Cancer
  • Schizophrenia
  • Fertility
  • Gut issues
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Respiratory disease
  • Autism
  • Depression
  • Ocular disease
  • Neurodegenerative conditions

Conclusions:

Experimental findings also indicate that melatonin renders treatment-resistant cancers sensitive to various therapeutic agents and may be useful, due to its multiple antioxidant actions, in especially delaying and perhaps treating a variety of age-related diseases and dehumanizing conditions. Mel. has been effectively used to combat oxidative stress, inflammation and cellular apoptosis and to restore tissue function in a number of human trials; its efficacy supports its more extensive use in a wider variety of human studies.

The uncommonly high-safety profile of Mel. also bolsters this conclusion.

Resources

  • Mel. as an antioxidant: under promises but over delivers (click here)
  • Mel. as an antioxidant: under promises but over delivers (click here)
  • Mel.: exceeding expectations (click here)
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