Melatonin (N-acetyl-5-methoxytryptamine) is a naturally occurring hormone found in animals, plants, and microbes. In humans, it is produced primarily by the pineal gland, located in the center of the brain. Melatonin forms part of the system that regulates the sleep-wake cycle by chemically causing drowsiness and lowering the body temperature. Production of melatonin by the pineal gland is inhibited by light and permitted by darkness. Secretion of melatonin, as well as its level in the blood, peaks in the middle of the night and gradually falls during the second half of the night, with normal variations in timing according to an individual’s chronotype. (1,2) Melatonin is also important for its ability to scavenge free radicals and to regulate the activity and expression of antioxidant and pro-oxidant enzymes. (3,4,5) In human plasma 61-85% of melatonin is weakly bound to proteins, and there is a close relationship between circulating free and salivary melatonin levels. (6) Melatonin enters saliva from blood either by passive diffusion or active transport. (7) Melatonin is measurable in saliva, and the acrophases of saliva and plasma melatonin rhythms are significantly correlated. (8,9) Plasma and salivary melatonin concentrations increase when moving from a supine to a standing position, and decrease when these positions are reversed, due to changes in plasma volume. (10) Inflammatory processes such as periodontitis trigger an increase in plasma melatonin, which then increases melatonin levels in the oral cavity, where it may increase antioxidant protection. (11)
DLMO & Melatonin Onset Analysis
With saliva as a biological sample, researchers can non-invasively monitor melatonin levels without an overnight sleep clinic stay (polysomnogram). This eliminates the rhythm perturbation caused by a clinical sleep center laboratory, can be performed in 4-6 hrs (as opposed to 24 hrs), and offers the convenience of collecting samples at home. Salivary DLMO is determined by measuring salivary melatonin levels over several time-points prior to and just after habitual sleeptime. Calculating the time that the nocturnal melatonin concentration is significantly elevated from daytime samples (+/- 2 deviations from baseline levels)- DMLO is the most sensitive and direct index for identifying an individual’s biorhythm which may be entrained (synchronized) to a 24 hr light/dark cycle or can be in a free-running state. A misaligned DMLO may indicate delayed sleep phase syndrome (DSPS) or advanced sleep phase disorder (ASPD) and its relationship to various metabolic conditions, diseases, disorders and genetic and environmental components are of significant interest in current research.
|Optimum Collection Volume:||225 μL*|
|Avoid foods such as pitted fruit, bananas and chocolate 24 hours before sample collection.|
|Assay Range:||0.78-50 pg/mL|
Collect Saliva Samples
MELATONIN SALIVA COLLECTION CONSIDERATIONS
Better results begin with better saliva collection. This collection protocol features general considerations to maximize salivary Melatonin analysis. Use this analyte specific collection protocol to plan your collection methodology and sampling schemes.
Add DNA Analysis to My Study
Considerations for adding Salivary DNA to analyte Studies:
You can combine salivary analytes with easy, accurate, and affordable genomic testing using Salimetrics SalivaLab and the same sample that you are already collecting – no specialized saliva collection devices or additional samples are required.
Don’t know what SNPs are right for you? The SalivaLab’s DNA team specializes in genetic testing services, we recommend you Request a DNA Consult (gratis) to learn more about common considerations such as # of samples, participant ethnicity, and IRB Approval.
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References & Salivary Melatonin Research
- Claustrat, B., Brun, J., Chazot, G. (2005). The basic physiology and pathophysiology of melatonin. Sleep Med Rev, 9(1), 11-24.
- Cajochen, C., Kräuchi, K., Wirz-Justice, A. (2003). Role of melatonin in the regulation of human circadian rhythms and sleep. J Neuroendocrinol, 15(4), 432-37.
- Jou, M.-J., Peng, T.-I., Yu, P.-Z., et al. (2007). Melatonin protects against common deletion of mitochondrial DNA-augmented mitochondrial oxidative stress and apoptosis. J Pineal Res, 43(4), 389-403.
- Rodriguez, C., Mayo, J.C., Sainz, R.M., et al. (2003). Regulation of antioxidant enzymes: A significant role for melatonin. J Pineal Res, 36(1), 1-9.
- Gupta, Y.K., Gupta, M., Kohli, K. (2003). Neuroprotective role of melatonin in oxidative stress vulnerable brain. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol, 47(4), 373-86.
- Kennaway, D.J., Voultsios, A. (1998). Circadian rhythm of free melatonin in human plasma. J Clin Endocrinol Metab, 83(3), 1013-15.
- Gröschl, M., Köhler, H., Topf, H.G., et al. (2008). Evaluation of saliva collection devices for the analysis of steroids, peptides and therapeutic drugs. J Pharm Biomed Anal, 47(3), 478-86.
- Voultsios, A., Kennaway, D.J., Dawson, D. (1997). Salivary melatonin as a circadian phase marker: Validation and comparison to plasma melatonin. J Biol Rhythms, 12(5), 457-66.
- Vakkuri, O. (1985). Diurnal rhythm of melatonin in human saliva. Acta Physiol Scand, 124(3), 409-412.
- Deacon, S., Arendt, J. (1994). Posture influences melatonin concentrations in plasma and saliva in humans. Neurosci Lett, 167(1-2), 191-94.
- Cutando, A., Gómez-Moreno, G., Villalba, J., et al. (2003). Relationship between salivary melatonin levels and periodontal status in diabetic patients. J Pineal Res, 35(4), 239-44.