Courtesy wikipediaDo you have blue eyes? If yes, you’re genetically connected to Paul Newman, Brad Pitt and Gwyneth Paltrow according to the findings of a new study.
Researchers in Denmark have announced their finding that all people with blue eyes have a single, common ancestor. Their theory is that a genetic mutation occurred 6,000 to 10,000 years ago that was the beginning of the blue-eyed phenomenon.
Through their study, all humans at first had brown eyes. A mutation created an on/off switch in a specific gene controlling eye color of humans. When triggered to switch off, it stopped the body’s ability to make brown eyes, researchers say. More scientifically, the off switch reduces the body’s ability to create melanin in the iris of the eye. With less melanin, brown eye coloring is diluted to blue.
It’s a very specific mix of genetic code that leads to blue eyes, the researchers continue, while there is much diversity in the genetic make-up of brown- or green-eyed individuals.
The best way to think of it, the researchers add, is that our genetic make-up is like a deck of shuffling cards. The traits from our genes recombine in various forms to impact things like hair color, baldness, freckles and beauty spots. Those changes don’t have a huge impact on the survival of their carriers.