MC1R Membrane Protein Introduction

Introduction of MC1R

MC1R, encoded by MC1R gene, is a member of G-protein coupled receptor family which has seven transmembrane regions. It primarily exists on the surface of melanocytes which produce a pigment called melanin. This receptor is one of the key proteins that participate in the regulation of mammalian skin and hair color by mediating the production of two types of melanin in melanocytes.

Basic Information of MC1R
Protein Name Melanocyte-stimulating hormone receptor
Gene Name MC1R
Aliases CMM5, MSH-R, SHEP2
Organism Homo sapiens (Human)
UniProt ID Q01726
Transmembrane Times 7
Length (aa) 317

Function of MC1R Membrane Protein

MC1R plays a critical role in the mediating of normal pigmentation and skin to sun sensitivity via control the types of melanin production by melanocytes. The melanin produced by melanocytes has two types, eumelanin and pheomelanin. People with eumelanin tend to have brown or black pigment and eumelanin protects skin from damage caused by ultraviolet (UV) radiation in sunlight. People with pheomelanin tend to have yellow or red pigment and increased risk of skin damage. Moreover, some studies have been indicated that MC1R mutation is associated with non-melanoma skin cancer. Besides, MC1R is also existed in other cells except for melanocytes and involved in other biological responses. It is reported that MC1R regulates pain sensation and lacking MC1R increases tolerance to capsaicin acting and decrease response to chemically induced inflammatory pain. Some studies show that MC1R is involved in the mediation of immune and inflammation responses and linked to the sepsis susceptibility.

MSH-MC1R regulation pathway of pigment genes. Fig.1 MSH-MC1R regulation pathway of pigment genes. (Steck, 2014)

Application of MC1R Membrane Protein in Literature

  1. Wendt J., et al. Contributions by MC1R variants to melanoma risk in males and females. JAMA Dermatol. 2018, 154(7):789-795. PubMed ID: 29898205

    The article displays that the effect of MC1R variants on melanoma susceptibility is different in males and females. This could help to better classify melanoma risk factors between the sexes.

  2. Almathen F., et al. Polymorphisms in MC1R and ASIP genes are associated with coat colour variation in the Arabian camel. Journal of Heredity. 2018, 109(6):700-706. PubMed ID: 29893870

    The study identifies that MC1R polymorphisms C901T is associated with the white coat colour, while 23delT/T and an SNP G25A in ASIP gene are associated with both black and dark brown coat colours. It is the first evidence of candidate polymorphisms associated with Mendelian traits in the dromedary.

  3. Tagliabue E., et al. MC1R variants as melanoma risk factors independent of at-risk phenotypic characteristics: a pooled analysis from the M-SKIP project. Cancer Management and Research. 2018, 10:1143-1154. PubMed ID: 29795986

    The authors suggest that measuring the MC1R genotype might result in a benefit for melanoma prediction. The results could be a valid starting point to guide the development of scientific protocols assessing melanoma risk prediction tools incorporating the MC1R genotype.

  4. Huertas C., et al. Characteristics of familial melanoma in Valencia, Spain, based on the presence of CDKN2A mutations and MC1R variants. Acta Dermato-venereologica. 2018, 98(5):512-516. PubMed ID: 29405243

    The study shows that MC1R variants reduce the age at diagnosis in all groups and is associated with an increased prevalence of squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), especially in patients with familial melanoma without CDKN2A mutations.

  5. Thomas A., et al. Widespread dynamic and pleiotropic expression of the melanocortin-1-receptor (MC1R) system is conserved across chick, mouse and human embryonic development. Birth defects research. 2018, 110(5): 443-455. PubMed ID: 29316344

    The study shows that MC1R is widely expressed during human, chick and mouse embryonic and fetal stages in many somatic tissues, particularly in the musculoskeletal and nervous systems, and conserved across evolution in these three amniotes.

MC1R Preparation Options

Based on the versatile Magic™ membrane protein production platform, Creative Biolabs can provide many flexible options for soluble and functional target protein, from which you can always find a better match for your particular project. Aided by our versatile Magic™ anti-membrane protein antibody discovery platform, we also provide customized anti-MC1R antibody development services.

As a forward-looking research institute as well as a leading custom service provider in the field of membrane protein, Creative Biolabs has won good reputation among our worldwide customers for successfully accomplishing numerous challenging projects including generation of many functional membrane proteins. Please feel free to contact us for more information.


  1. Steck M B. (2014). The role of melanocortin 1 receptor in cutaneous malignant melanoma: along the mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway. Biological Research For Nursing. 16(4), 421-428.

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