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The formation of melatonin in the pineal gland is conditioned by light. During the night, when it is dark, the accumulation of melatonin in the blood is almost ten times greater when compared with the day. In the course of the day, it is not found practically trace of melatonin in the blood because the melatonin produced during the nighttime hours is absorbed and used by the body within a few hours.
This hormone plays an important role in the control of the circadian cycle as well as in the transformations of body cycles during 24 hours, in particular of the sleep cycle.
It was found that children have a melatonin rate increased blood when compared with adults, and that the amount of melatonin in the blood is greatly reduced with age. For these reasons, some scholars initially thought that melatonin was involved in youth growing up and that later lost its relevance.
It '' was noted that people suffering from cancer, chronically ill or people suffering from other diseases due to aging, such as Parkinson's disease or Alzheimer's disease usually have very low levels of melatonin and even absent.
  Melatonin has a significant role in sexual development processes and controlling sexual phases for both men and women. In the animal actually ascertains the beginning and the end of the mating period by controlling the production of the respective sex hormones. Multiple trials have clearly demonstrated that the sexual behavior of rats could be often conditioned by the modification of the day-night cycle through the use of artificial light.
Melatonin is a hormone that flows from different conditions and therefore affects all the other parts of the body. Its main activity is to control the levels of all other hormones in the blood and maintain their stability (homeostasis) by helping them in their respective functions. A change in the proportion of melatonin also causes a change in the levels of other hormones.
A regular level of melatonin ensures that the immune system finds and cancels instantly aggressive carriers, microbes or viruses. Being one of the most important antioxidants, melatonin is very valid for the neutralization of the so-called free radicals, which are responsible for the origin of cancer cells. Melatonin, which can overcome any barrier and penetrate in each cell is the best destroyer of free radicals known.
Specific tumor studies have shown that melatonin can support and optimize certain chemo-therapeutic drugs and simultaneously reduced to more tolerable levels of certain of their side effects that, sometimes, can be very harmful.
   Melatonin in the life cycle
During pregnancy, the fetus receives its daily dose of melatonin from the mother through the placenta. His own generation of melatonin begins only a few days after birth and sometimes takes more than a year before the pineal gland to stabilize and start its natural production phase. This could be the cause for which children often have erratic rhythms of sleep.
The proportion of melatonin in a child increases steadily until the seventh year of age. Once reached this age, the pituitary gland produces growth hormones during the stage of sleep. In children, one of the most significant stages of growth corresponds to the time when they sleep more, ie from birth to three or four years.
Before the child reaches puberty, the melatonin level in the blood is reduced as a result of body development, which in turn leads to a decrease in daily issuance of melatonin in the blood. The resulting decline in the level of melatonin promotes the release of two sex hormones, LH (luteinizing hormone) and FSH (follicle stimulating hormone), which initiate at the age of development. In boys this development leads to the production of seminal fluid while in girls promotes the start to the menstrual cycle.
After puberty, when it begins to become adults, melatonin generation begins slowly and steadily decreasing. At age 45, melatonin levels decrease dramatically. The pineal gland stops emitting a normal amount of melatonin and therefore the aging process begins. For women this means the onset of menopause. Although men generally continue to remain fertile, their sexual functions are reduced considerably. These and other symptoms of senility are the immediate results of the decreased functioning of the pineal gland, which gradually loses control over other functions of the body.
Scholars of the Institute Tierärztliche Hochschule in Hannover (Germany) made known abroad the article in 1995, in which claimed to have discovered molecules of magnetite in the pineal gland. In many experiments it has been documented that the activity of the pineal gland could also be hampered by relatively weak electromagnetic fields, disseminated by appliances such as microwave ovens, television sets, transformers and mobile phones as well as computers and high-voltage power lines.
Under the influence of these fields, melatonin generation suffered a drastic reduction. The same experiments also revealed that the 'lowering of the melatonin production, caused by prolonged exposure of the subject to electro-smog, determined a decided increase in the development of breast cancer generated by estrogen and by so-called pseudo-estrogen.
Research into Cancer Studies must follow in detail to such discoveries in the future. Based on today's knowledge we learned that the functioning of the pineal gland and consequently of its production of melatonin, can be influenced by the following elements:
- from intense light during the night or by the irregular sleep patterns (for example if you do the night shifts)
- frequent travel that cause changes of molten-time, especially if you travel in the direction from west to east (such as components of a crew or people who often travels)
- exposure to electromagnetic and magnetic fields, especially during the night hours (for example, clock radios beside the bed or radio equipment, excessive propagations issued from the TV in small environments, the excessive use of televisions controlled by radio, especially those which employ the so-called "pulsed fields"). The disorders of the smooth functioning of the pineal gland originated from outside seem to accelerate its aging process and its calcification.

The resulting negative outcomes appear to clarify the reason why certain degenerative disorders have increased in developed countries more than in others during the last thirty years.