Saturday, September 30, 2017

Blue Eyes Are A Recent Mutation

New research shows that people with blue eyes have a single, common ancestor. Scientists have tracked down a genetic mutation which took place 6,000-10,000 years ago and is the cause of the eye color of all blue-eyed humans alive on the planet today.
From here.

The paper is:

Hans Eiberg, Jesper Troelsen, Mette Nielsen, Annemette Mikkelsen, Jonas Mengel-From, Klaus W. Kjaer, Lars Hansen. "Blue eye color in humans may be caused by a perfectly associated founder mutation in a regulatory element located within the HERC2 gene inhibiting OCA2 expression." 123(2) Human Genetics 177 (2008) DOI: 10.1007/s00439-007-0460-x

5 comments:

Samuel Andrews said...

Have you heard this blue eye mutation predicted to be 6ky-10ky old by modern DNA has been found in remains Paleolithic/Mesolithic remains from all over Europe and that many Mesolithic/Paleolithic Europeans had mostly blue eyes? It debunks that theory made in 2008.

But ancient DNA also indicates sometime between 5ky and the present the frequency of blue eye color skyrockted from under 20% in most pops to 60-70%. But the trait had existed and been widespread long before 10ky.

andrew said...

Interesting.

Ryan said...

La Brana-1 had blue eyes 7kya. Samuel - do you recall which other ones had blue eyes off hand?

andrew said...

Apparently blue eyes are less than 15kya. https://twitter.com/razibkhan/status/915091063299301376

The huge leap in frequency suggests either an unknown selective effect, or more likely, a founder effect in a population that grows immensely for cultural reasons.

Pelinor 30 said...

Sites at Loschbour and Motala yielded blue eyed DNA from their MTDNA HG U remains dated ~8k bp.