Enzymatic extraction and characterisation of melanosomes from human hair
Ng, Hui Min
Date of Issue2016
School of Materials Science and Engineering
Melanins are major pigments that are present in skin, hair and eyes of humans and animals. Numerous researches was done on melanosomes, however, current understanding of its physical and chemical properties are still limited. Melanin has many unique features which have the capability to be applicable in our lives. In this study, the enzymatic extraction of intact melanosomes from human hair was investigated by utilising two types of enzymes – papain and keratinase. The final product is then characterized to understand the chemical and optical properties. Enzymatic extraction using papain has been proven to be successful from previous studies. This study is the first in using of keratinase instead of papain in the extraction procedure and it proved to be successful in yielding melanosomes in their ellipsoidal shape. However, an effective and quick extraction method has yet to be discovered. To address this issue, herein the influence of time, temperature and type of enzyme used in isolation procedure on the resulting product is examined. It was also found that lesser amount of papain used did not adversely affect the morphology or chemical structure of melanosomes. Overall, the results of this project are in coherence with past studies. As such, this will help bring forward the advancement of melanin isolation procedures.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University