The major hormone of the pineal gland is Melatonin (N-acetyl-5-methoxy-tryptamine). It is the major indole compound synthesized by the pineal gland. It is converted from Serotonin by Hydroxy Indole-O-Methyl Transferase. It is excreted into the urine as 6-Sulfatoxymelatonin, N-Acetyl Serotonin, other glucuronide and sulfate forms, and also a small amount as unconjugated "free" Melatonin. Melatonin has potent melanocyte contracting properties. Melatonin is primarily secreted during the dark (night) cycle. Levels drop dramatically after exposure to bright light. Melatonin binds to various proteins including Albumin. Patients with cancer frequently have decreased levels of Melatonin as do patients with impaired central nervous system function. Elevated levels can be found in sympathetic orthostatic hypotension. Melatonin has a stimulatory and suppressive feedback on Gonadotropin release depending on Melatonin levels. Altered levels of Melatonin have been reported with sleep disorders, jet lag, depression, stress, schizophrenia, hypothalamic amenorrhea, pregnancy, anorexia nervosa, immunological disorders, as well as sexual maturation during puberty.
No special preparation is needed for Melatonin. Inform your doctor if you are on any medications or have any underlying medical conditions or allergies before undergoing Melatonin. Your doctor depending on your condition will give specific instructions.
|UNISEX||All age groups||Results vary widely with the time of the day|