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A pigment found in the skin, hair, and eyes of vertebrate animals. Melanin protects the skin from damage by ultraviolet (UV) lightand is the pigment which is produced in response to damage by the sun, causing skin to tan to protect against further damage. In vertebrate albino animals, melanin is the pigment which is missing from their bodies. The melanin molecule is formed when the amino acid tyrosine is oxidized.

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