February 7, For every people in the world, only one or two will have red hair. And when you meet a red head with blue eyesyou are looking at the rarest colour combination of all for human beings.
Red hair or ginger hair occurs naturally in one to two percent of the human populationappearing with greater frequency two to six percent among people of Northern or Northwestern European ancestry and lesser frequency in other populations. It is most common in individuals homozygous for a recessive allele on chromosome 16 that produces an altered version of the MC1R protein. Red hair varies in hue from a deep burgundy or bright copperor auburnto burnt orange or red-orange to strawberry blond.
Besides the obvious similarity as heads-of-state, all three had red hair. Hair color ranges from platinum blond to ebony, due to levels of pigments produced by specialized cells called melanocytes. Those with dark hair have cells that produce a pigment called eumelanin, and those with blond or red hair have cells that produce pheomelanin.
In the array of possible natural hair colors, dark hues are the most common — more than 90 percent of people worldwide have brown or black hair. Red hair, occurring in just 1 to 2 percent of the population, is the least common. Blue eyes are similarly uncommon, and they may be becoming rarer.
Redheads get a a lot of grief. Or, at least, they seem to be the butt of quite a few jokes. But this is silly because redheads are super cool.
It is generally believed that all human beings share approximately 98 percent of their genetic makeup. Over the centuries though, DNA has evolved, changed and mutated, so some of us bear little similarities to our ancestors in regard to things like physical features and height. Even though many people go to great lengths to appear like everybody else, we almost all have something that makes us different from the next person.
No one knows for sure why this is. There isn't any evidence that the DNA changes that cause red hair also affect eye color. Or vice versa.
Redheads have a particularly high abundance of pheomelanin, with very little eumelanin, which ranges from brown to black. When it's activated, it causes melanocytes to specifically produce eumelanin over phenomelanin, which balances out an individual's ratio. Contrastingly, redheads are born with a genetic variant that causes MC1R to chemically function differently on melanocytes, which leads to less eumelanin and more pheomelanin production. These genetic variants are recessive, meaning in order to be born a redhead, either non-redhead parents are carriers 25 percentor one parent is a redhead and the other is a carrier 50 percent ; or both parents are redheads almost percent.
Q: Where does red hair come from? A: Contrary to popular opinion, red hair did not originate in Scotland, Ireland or Scandinavia, but in central Asia. According to the Washington Post, as our ancestors migrated from this region to the colder, darker climate of northern Europe, redheads had a survival related advantage over their darker skinned, darker haired counterparts.