Ion-exchange in melanin: an electron spin resonance study with lanthanide probes

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Science  11 Jun 1976:
Vol. 192, Issue 4244, pp. 1132-1134
DOI: 10.1126/science.179142


Changes are induced in the electron spin resonance signal amplitude and microwave power saturation of the naturally occurring free radical in melanin by bound paramagnetic ions. The changes serve as experimental observables in competition experiments between diamagnetic and paramagnetic metal ions for melanin binding sites and between melanin and ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid for paramagnetic metal ions. Evidence is presented for the existence of several specific types of metal binding sites. The interaction of copper with free radicals leading to loss of electron spin resonance signal amplitude is magnetic in nature and not, as has been supposed, chemical.