Quantitative scattering of melanin solutions

TitleQuantitative scattering of melanin solutions
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsRiesz, J. J., Gilmore J. B., and Meredith Paul
JournalBiophysical Journal
AbstractThe optical scattering coefficient of a dilute, well-solubilized eumelanin solution has been accurately measured as a function of incident wavelength, and found to contribute < 6% of the total optical attenuation between 210 and 325 nm. At longer wavelengths (325-800 nm), the scattering was less than the minimum sensitivity of our instrument. This indicates that ultraviolet and visible optical density spectra can be interpreted as true absorption with a high degree of confidence. The scattering coefficient versus wavelength was found to be consistent with Rayleigh theory for a particle radius of 38 6 1 nm. Our results shed important light on the role of melanins as photoprotectants.