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Old 09-09-2002, 12:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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"Australia has an unenviable record when it comes to the sun.
Up to 80% of new cancers here are skin cancer and half of all Australians will develop some form of skin cancer during their lives.

Sun tanning may be bad for our skin, but it's still an irresistible pastime here.

In three years' time though, getting burned in the sun may be a thing of the past.

In a laboratory at Monash University, half an hour outside Melbourne they're developing Melanotan.

Nicknamed the "Barbie Drug" Melanotan is a naturally occurring hormone that gives users an all over tan after one dose.

The drug triggers the production of melanin - the dark pigment - in the skin.

Not only do you go brown, but you're also protected from the sun's harmful rays when you do go outside.

Tests in animals showed how effective it could be - dogs, who are naturally more receptive than humans to the drug, grew jet black fur when given it.

Yearly dose

But for Biotech Company Epitan and its chief executive Wayne Millen, Melanotan is about much more than just vanity.

"Yes, you will go brown, because you will tan and the reason you will tan is because the drug itself enables the body to develop melanin.

"The reason that's important is that melanin is the body's internal sunscreen. The fact that you go tan is of considerable interest, but in going tan you endow upon yourself a protective mechanism."

It has cost $10 million to develop the drug so far and will cost another $70 million to get through the approvals process.

By the time it reaches the public, Melanotan will be a match-sized implant that sits under your skin.

Each 30-day dose will cost around a hundred dollars and the developers say one dose per year will be enough to get the benefits.

The potential market for Melanotan is huge - every fair-skinned person visiting or living in a hot country is an ideal candidate.

Vanity tablet

Initially the drug would only be available from dermatologists.

But in the long term the company wants to challenge the solarium and skin stain markets, worth over $6bn dollars a year in the United States alone.

But as Patrick Holly, head of the Australian Solarium Association explains, sunbed operators aren't ready to shut up shop quite yet.

He said: "You have the choice of lying down for 20 minutes and having a snooze in a relaxed quiet atmosphere as opposed to having an intrusive operation to get medication stuck under your skin. That is a choice people have to make."
What sets melanotan apart from traditional methods of tanning is that the skin doesn't have to burn first. (???????)

That's of particular interest here in Australia, where $500m is spent annually on skin-related medical treatment.

But although melanotan will be marketed on health grounds, its popular appeal will be to personal vanity. Simon Jenner took part in the first public trial of Melanotan.

He said: "The hook is the darker skin, I think it looks healthier in most people.

"I'd still go out in the sun, but with Melanotan you get the all over tan, so you get to avoid the embarrassing tan lines and it's a lot quicker, a lot less work."

Melanotan begins phase three trials at the end of next year and should be available from 2005."

I found this on THE OTHER BOARD....

I'd like to hear some comments about it...

I believe this could be seen at two different angles...

1)-These people making the drug want to get us, (the salon owners) out of business...

2)-This could go hand in hand with the salons....take the "barbie drug", and then go tanning, the SAFE WAY. You would get BEAUTIFUL color, and not have to worry about damage to the skin. Also, the "Pale" people, after taking the drug, would be able to go tanning , right????....More customers!

Lot of Info

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Old 09-09-2002, 10:22 AM   #2 (permalink)
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sounds scary to me...what about side effects?I have a big problem with the statement that "Melanotan is set apart from traditional methods of tanning in that the skin doesn't have to burn first"....Sounds like another desperate attempt by dermatologists to blow us out of the water...
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Old 09-09-2002, 06:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I saw this on suntanning site.
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Old 09-11-2002, 06:35 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The line where it says that it will tan you in one treatment is speculation.

I've been following the development of melanotan fairly closely, thought about buying stock in the company but as of now i think it's to risky.

What they know so far is in the first stage of clinical trials everything was administered by injection. a daily injection for 10 days. And it will yeild a somewhat light base tan, it wont be dark at all. But what interested me wasn't that melanotan gives you this "dark" tan right away because all the medical research i've read says it wont do that, but it WILL give a skin type 1 or a type II the ability to tan like a skin type 3. Which means that if your a skin type one and can't really tan or a fair skin type II this drug will give you the ability to get a very nice tan in the sun, and will also keep you from burning so easy just like a skin type III.
The reason Cancer rates are so high in Australia is because you have a population of fair skin people who's skin has not evolved to such a hot climate, so the majority of people there burn very easy and they have a high skin cancer rate.

I think the media is making melanotan look like a drug that would kill the tanning industry, i'd say the exact opposite... now all those skin type one people who had to use crappy sunless tanners can now go to tanning beds and get a nice tan. I think melanotan will kill the dha sunless tanning industry though.

why i haven't invested in melanotan... because as the article stated it still as 70 million dollars worth of clinical testing before it can even be considered for approval, getting a drug approved is not a easy process... nor a cheap one.

Just my 2 cents
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Old 09-12-2002, 10:12 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I'd question this because melanin is clear colour (except for the pink from the blood) and turns brown in the photo oxidization process only during and after exposure to UVA + Oxygen. So where would the brown come from ???

IF however it causes, among other things that melanin does, the secretion of very large amounts of melanin without the need for exposure to UVB then what we've got is the end of LP equipment and the new HP filter system equipment and all we need is HP emitting only high quantities of UVA.

This would be a dream boon to our industry, except for those who couldn't get rid of their UVB emitting equipment. Problem is though... UVA does not cause a production of vitamin D so we could kiss that feature goodby when referring to the healthy, beneficial effects of indoor tanning.

What says Don Smith?
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Old 09-12-2002, 02:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Don says save your money!

You are exactly right. Even though Melanotan stimulates the production of melanin, it still requires UVR exposure to oxidize it to create a tan.

That's why they are trying to develop Melanotan primarily as a "Viagra" type product. The story going around here (where the product was originally developed) is that there was one guy that the drug REALLY worked on and he had the biggest smile in Tucson!

Don "There's One Born Every Minute" Smith
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Old 09-12-2002, 04:50 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Don, I really think that it actualy activates the secretion of melanin thereby eliminating the need for UVB (orUVA1 in HP).

IF I am correct (I say humbly) then the "old" style HP with "virtually" no UVB emmission would be the greatest thing for tanning salons to use in conjunction with malanotan. This would efectively put the need for spray booths, for those who are afraid of burning beds, out to pasture.

The erection as well as stimulated hair growth, diminishment of white hair, and a few other nice pluses are also to be expected... IF this passes.

You're probably correct that the marketing would probably be directed to it's Viagara effects but we in the tanning industry would be wiser and realize its true potential.

NOT THAT THERE'S ANYTHING WRONG WITH AN ALL DAY ERECTION...AS long as it's used properly and safely!
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Old 09-13-2002, 04:18 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Yes the erection part is a promising side-effect. That side-effect however is being developed by an entirely different company in the United states where as the original tanning effect is being developed by the australian company epitan.

Melanotan or alpha-msh(chemical name) is a much more potent version of the synthetic hormone that is released by the body during and after sunexposure. And it will give the user a light tan w/o sun exposure.

It was first tested where it was discovered at the university of arizona. Back in the late 80's it went threw an fda approved clinical trial where it was tested on 100 human volunteers. This is where they discovered the erection side-effect, and where they showed that while it will give a light tan to parts of the body that where never in the sun, the faces and arms of the those that tested it where already noticeably darker just from daily sun exposure(they where told to avoid the sun as much as possible)

The australian company claims that it has found a formulation to isolate just the tanning effect, so no erection. But as of now, the US company developing it for erectile purposes has yet to be able to drop the tanning effect. And the scientist at epitan don't think they will be able to isolate just the erectile effect w/o having the tanning effect as well.

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Old 07-10-2007, 11:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Nicknamed the \"Barbie Drug\" Melanotan


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