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Researchers have discovered a group of molecules that are capable of stimulating melanocytes to make melanin, a natural pigment which causes the skin to darken. This means that people may soon be able to get a tan without having to resort to lying in the sun where they increase their risk of skin cancer and other skin damage. A study showed that a melanin shot (melanotan II) used in conjunction with tanning beds or sunlight increased the tanning results by 3 times. Researchers are also investigating this drug to try to find the compounds in it that appear to promote weight loss and sex drive. In another study, men with erectile dysfunction who took the drug in the form of a nasal spray were all able to achieve erection with the added bonus of an increase in sexual desire. Melanotan as a tanning agent is in the final stages of testing, as a diet drug is at the end of phase one and as a sexual dysfunction drug it is at the end of phase two.
Source: summary of medical news story as reported by ABC Local – San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose
About: New drug aimed at providing a tan, improving sex life and reducing weight
Date: 23 November 2004
Source: ABC Local – San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose
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