The Story of Melanin
Go to the website: http://www.understandingrace.org/humvar/skin_01.html Read the first section of the site and answer the following questions:
1. What adaptation did human ancestors develop as they became more active and moved into hot environments?
- The adaptation the human ancestors developed is they increased the number of sweat glands on their skin while at the same time reducing the amount of their body hair.
2. Where is the strongest amount of sun exposure?
- The strongest amount of sun exposure is near the equator.
Now, click “Next”, read the section and answer the following questions.
3. What does the body need to help absorb vitamin D? Why is vitamin D important?
- Ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Vitamin D is important because it helps you get strong bones.
4. What is folate? What is the relationship between folate and vitamin D?
- Folate is folic acid “an essential nutrient to the development of healthy fetuses”.
5. What is Jablonski and Chaplin’s theory on why skin pigmentation developed? What sort of investigations did they do to support their theory?
- Their hypothesis is that human skin color correlates closely to annual levels of UV radiation levels based on geography and other environmental factors. They measured skin reflectance from the people around the world.
Now, watch the following two videos and answer the subsequent questions.
Video 1: From Melanocyte to Melanoma- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiARvdeXdKM
6. What are melanocytes and what is melanin? What does melanin do?
- Melanocytes is a…