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Many insect developmental color changes are known to be regulated by both ecdysone and juvenile hormone. Yet the molecular mechanisms underlying this regulation have not been well understood. This review highlights the hormonal mechanisms involved in the regulation of two key enzymes [dopa decarboxylase (DDC) and phenoloxidase] necessary for insect cuticular melanization, and the molecular action of 20-hydroxyecdysone on various transcription factors leading to DDC expression at the end of a larval molt in Manduca sexta. In addition, the ecdysone cascade found in M. sexta is compared with that of other organisms.