Brad Pitt Mutation Appeared 6,000 to 10,000 Years Ago

|

Gene researchers at the University of Copenhagen have concluded that the mutation that created blue eyes in humans arose in Europe sometime between 10,000 and 6,000 years ago. Blue-eyed people all share exactly the same change to their genetic make-up.

"From this we can conclude that all blue-eyed individuals are linked to the same ancestor," [researcher Hans] Eiberg said. "They have all inherited the same switch at exactly the same spot in their DNA." Eiberg and his colleagues detailed their study in the Jan. 3 online edition of the journal Human Genetics.

http://images.eonline.com/eol_images/Profiles/20061005/244.sinatra.frank.100406.jpg
http://www.freewebs.com/animalrightsvegetarian/brad_pitt.jpg

See above for recent exemplars expressing this mutation.

Researcher John Hawks from the University of Wisconsin further speculates:

"The question really is, 'Why did we go from having nobody on Earth with blue eyes 10,000 years ago to having 20 or 40 percent of Europeans having blue eyes now?" Hawks said. "This gene does something good for people. It makes them have more kids."

Link to Livescience article describing the research here.

Disclosure: I've said it before and I'm saying it again: Some of my best friends have blue eyes. In addition, my wife tells me that I have hazel eyes, although my driver's license says I have brown ones.

NEXT: MS Yahoo: The Real Deal

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. How dare you create any sort of equivalence between the Chairman of the Board and Johnny Suede.

  2. People with blue eyes have more kids because they are gay!

  3. So… Now Ron is Big Blue’s bitch.

  4. Warren: My wife has lovely green eyes.

  5. you are not a special or unique snowflake

    you are the same, decaying organic matter as the planet

  6. I’m glad you mention that in the disclosure. My girlfriend, who is Japanese, calls me out on what I used to think were brown eyes. Apparently, they’re half brown and half green or something. And judging by the Japanese eye color, she may very well be right.

  7. Hmmm, I read somewhere that Thulsa Doom had blue eyes. 10,000-6,000 years ago sound right. His influence is far and wide.

  8. My wife and I both have blue-(ish) eyes.

    Am I having sex with a cousin?

    CB
    (Dislaimer: I AM from the South, so… take your best shot.)

  9. “This gene does something good for people. It makes them have more kids.”
    Is he implying that sexual selction plays a role in human evolution just like it does for birds of paradise?

    I actually love further proof that we are just another member of the animal kingdom. Humility is good.

  10. Nate: Apparently, they’re half brown and half green or something.

    That’s called hazel.

    Wikipedia: “A number of studies using three-point scales have assigned ‘hazel’ to be the medium-color between light brown and dark green.”

    It goes on to say that hazel eyes are frequently mixed in color.

  11. Neat article – and thanks, Walt!

    Gray eyes with brown spots, here.

  12. Blue eyes may be the color of fecundity, but green eyes are the color of money.

  13. Blue eyes may be the color of fecundity, but green eyes are the color of money.

    My eyes are so money and they don’t even know it!

  14. Why did we go from having nobody on Earth with blue eyes 10,000 years ago to having 20 or 40 percent of Europeans having blue eyes now?

    Easy. The people from the 12th planet all had blue eyes and they showed up with their Siamese Cats and their clones just about 8,000 to 10,000 years ago give or take a few centuries.

    That’s why the fundies believe in a new earth.

  15. “This gene does something good for people. It makes them have more kids.”

    What did I miss here? How does this follow?
    Is it just because the population went from none to 20 – 40% of Europeans in 10,000 years?

    (Could it be that blue eyes also make one ask too many questions in one blog comment?)

  16. medium-color between light brown and dark green.

    Interesting. Back in the Stone Age when I was doing a bonehead bio class taught by a surfer with a passion for genetics (hey, it was Californicate, what do you expect?) we were taught that there really are only two eye colors. Blue and Brown. All the other colors are just variations. From light brown to black is all brown. And from light gray to green was all blue.

    Then again, sometimes I don’t remember stuff as clearly as I think I do. I blame the wine.

    Anyhoooo, that class was interesting but it was hard as hell. I mean, for being bio for non-majors it certainly wasn’t a cake walk. Hardest class I ever had I think.

  17. Blue-eyed commenter here! Pinnacle of evolution, that’s me. And apparently related to Sinatra, too.

  18. Oh, and for the record, Mrs TWC has the biggest most beautiful brown puppy dog eyes you’ve ever seen. I’ve got beady little blue eyes.

    The House Blond and my son both got the big beautiful eyes and despite the recessive nature of blue eyes the kids both got blue eyes. But the color is exceptionally striking. A very bold beautiful and unusual shade of blue.

  19. You mean “used” to have more kids. Or perhaps it is a dominant gene… but I doubt that. I suspect that the trends now are against blue eyes.

    My family: Mom, Blue. Dad, Brown. Eldest Sis, Brown, Younger Sis, brown,

    Me: Green.

  20. Just checking–any girls with green eyes around here?

  21. “This gene does something good for people. It makes them have more kids.”

    Also from the article:

    The mutation affected the so-called OCA2 gene, which is involved in the production of melanin, the pigment that gives color to our hair, eyes and skin.

    IIRC, having less melanin in the skin is useful at higher latitudes because it allows the body to create more vitamin D.

  22. Just checking–any girls with green eyes around here?

    (besides Jennifer)

    fixed

  23. David Lo Pan wins the thread!

  24. Nate – what can Japanese people possibly know about eye color with those little slits?

    Commence Episiarch and joe slap fight….NOW!

  25. Lo Pan? Which Lo Pan? The little old basket case on wheels or the ten foot tall roadblock?

  26. If I smile, tell me some bad news before I laugh and act like a fool.

  27. but, was the new gene intelligently designed?

  28. Episiarch,

    They’re one and the same.

  29. Disclosure: I’ve said it before and I’m saying it again: Some of my best friends have blue eyes. In addition, my wife tells me that I have hazel eyes, although my driver’s license says I have brown ones.

    Shilling for big blue eyes

    Someone had to have already said this

  30. Glare of sunlight on snow is less intense to blue eyes then brown eyes thus giving blue eyes a better advantage in their environment and more likely to survive to have children.

    This is total speculation

  31. joshua corning,

    I think you have it backwards – glare is a bigger problem for blue-eyed folk.
    I could be wrong.

  32. Of course, the brown-eyed could finish off the blue-eyed at any moment if they chose to. Brown eyes adjust to darkness much better than blue. In other words, you’ll never see it coming.

  33. From this we can conclude that all blue-eyed individuals are linked to the same ancestor

    Okay, I remember seeing that everyone from about 3k years ago who has a descendent alive today is an ancestor to ALL people alive today. 2k for middle easterners (living in ME 2k years ago, that is).

    Isnt the statement I quoted fricking obvious then? Even though I am brown eyed, Im a descendent of that same ancestor.

  34. I’ve heard that blue eyes are an indicator of youthfulness. For example, some mammals (big cats, humans) are sometimes born with blue eyes, but the color changes as they grow older. So blue eyes in an adult would be suggestive of youth (fertility for women) which would be a selective advantage for women, and then passed down onto their progeny. I’ve heard similar arguments for blond hair.

    http://chemistry.about.com/cs/howthingswork/f/eyecolor.htm

    Full disclosure: I was born with blue eyes, now they are hazel.

  35. I have read that the reason for blue eyes as well as blond hair is due to clothing: In warm climes secondary sexual characteristics such as buttocks, legs, breasts, etc are commonly exposed all year round, yet in cold climes those things are all covered up. Blue eyes and blond hair evolved bcse they are perceived indicators of youth and fertility (especially the hair — the eyes could be a related mutation with less of an advantage — since all cultures demonstrate a preference for women with youthful (read light colored not gray) hair)

    I kinda thot I read it here in Hit and Run

  36. Glare of sunlight on snow is less intense to blue eyes

    Not mine. Not at the beach neither. Been wearing Raybans since they were cheap drugstore shades and were not particularly cool.

    My blue eyes are particularly sensitive to the diffused sunlight on a hazy or slightly foggy day. Like GWB’s million points of light, each reflected of a mirror-like droplet of moisture and focused like a laser on my retinas.

  37. Maybe that’s because you’re permanently hung over, TWC.

  38. “Okay, I remember seeing that everyone from about 3k years ago who has a descendant alive today is an ancestor to ALL people alive today.”

    That can’t be true. I am pretty sure that I am not descended from, say, and Australian aboriginal from 3000 years ago.

  39. So what are you saying?

  40. Still only brown or dark-green eyes can be considered “bedroom eyes.” Blue eyes just don’t cut it. They don’t smolder.

    My family: Dad has blue; mom has brown; older brother has blue; older sister has wonderful green with copper flecks; second older sister has brown; and I have brown.

  41. Still only brown or dark-green eyes can be considered “bedroom eyes.” Blue eyes just don’t cut it. They don’t smolder.

    Whether or not eyes are smoldering depends entirely upon who they’re looking at. If your blue-eyed girlfriend doesn’t smolder at you, it means you’re doing something wrong.

  42. Of course, the brown-eyed could finish off the blue-eyed at any moment if they chose to. Brown eyes adjust to darkness much better than blue.

    Depends on the personal habit of the individual w/ the blue eyes, PL. Marijuana use improves night vision.

  43. Why did we go from having nobody on Earth with blue eyes 10,000 years ago to having 20 or 40 percent of Europeans having blue eyes now?

    Exotic sells. Get a mutation for violet eyes, or pretty much any unique color, and that gene would spread too.

  44. I read somewhere that there is a correlation between lighter eyes and anxiety disorders. Dunno if they ever found any hard evidence to back it up.

  45. Bluebook, what are you so worried about? 😉

  46. I’m an ashamed brown-eyed father of a mutant blue-eyed son. If it’s genetic, then can’t these blue-eyed bastards be cured?

  47. Glare of sunlight on snow is less intense to blue eyes then brown eyes thus giving blue eyes a better advantage in their environment and more likely to survive to have children.

    Actually blue eyes are more light sensitive. I like the theory that blue eyes allow for better vision at dawn and dusk, the best times for big game hunting. More food to feed kids. Better night vision would have also helped in the extreme northern latitudes (Baltic Sea region seems to be the consensus) where they appeared.

  48. I’m an ashamed brown-eyed father of a mutant blue-eyed son. If it’s genetic, then can’t these blue-eyed bastards be cured?

    I believe that you could find a cure in the text for Oedipus.

  49. The illegals aliens with brown eyes seem to have more kids than the natives with blue eyes.

    I knew my baby-blues would get me into trouble. To avoid paying child support to multiple women, I got fixed at 26.

  50. If you’re still counting, here’s one more green-eyed female; with my blue-eyed husband we made a blue-eyed daughter.

    My dad, mom, brother and sister all had brown eyes.

  51. Green-eyed female; mom has brown eyes, dad has blue, sister also green.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.