Afamelanotide is a synthetic tridecapeptide and a structural analogue of α-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH). Afamelanotide is a melanocortin receptor agonist and binds predominantly to the melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R). Afamelanotide is thought to mimic the endogenous compound’s pharmacological activity by activating the synthesis of eumelanin mediated by the MC1R receptor. Eumelanin contributes to photoprotection through different mechanisms.
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