In humans, melatonin plays a significant role in a circadian rhythm, i.e. the daily cycle of biological activity based on a 24-hour interval. Secreted by the pineal gland, this chemical messenger is known as “Dracula Hormone” as the secretion peaks during the night hours in dark.
Here’s a snippet of the mechanism regarding how does melatonin work on our body?
Detection of dark influences the entire production and release of this wonder hormone by the retina. To break down the process, read the following steps:
- Retina detects light and sends signals to the hypothalamus.
- Melatonin secretion is inhibited.
- During the night, retina detects dark and again sends signals to SCN ( suprachiasmatic nucleus)
- SCN, in turn, communicates with the pineal gland which causes the release of melatonin.