The large pigment cells of fish, amphibia, reptiles and many invertebrates which actively disperse and aggregate their pigment granules. These cells include MELANOPHORES, erythrophores, xanthophores, leucophores and iridiophores. (In algae, chromatophores refer to CHLOROPLASTS. In phototrophic bacteria chromatophores refer to membranous organelles (BACTERIAL CHROMATOPHORES).)
Chromatophores (large pigment cells of fish, amphibia, reptiles and many invertebrates) which contain melanin. Short term color changes are brought about by an active redistribution of the melanophores pigment containing organelles (MELANOSOMES). Mammals do not have melanophores; however they have retained smaller pigment cells known as MELANOCYTES.