Background: Skin pigmentation is a broadly appearing phenomenon in nature which plays
an important task of determining the appearance and biology of all vertebrates including human beings.
Skin color is a crucial attribute, determined by the synthesis of melanin pigment within melanocytes by
the process of melanogenesis and is regulated by many extrinsic as well as intrinsic factors. Tyrosinase
catalyzes the key step of melanogenesis, dysfunction of tyrosinase leads to reduce melanin production
which results in severe clinical and aesthetical problems of hypopigmentation. Therefore, the regulation
of melanin production is an important strategy in the treatment of abnormal skin pigmentation for
cosmetic and medicinal purpose.
Method: The present review covers the various aspects of mammalian melanocyte biology which will
help in the identification of key regulators of melanogenesis from pharmaceutical and pharmacological
point of view. Further sections of the review focus on the dysfunctions of melanogenic pathways,
which result in severe clinical and aesthetical problems of hypopigmentation.
Conclusion: We have also attempted to highlight the ability of available scientifically validated plant
extracts to naturally enhance melanin synthesis in order to cure hypopigmentation.