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   Undertoad  Saturday Apr 15 11:26 AM

4/15/2006: Mixed-race couple has black and white twins



This item is a few weeks old, sent along by xoB, but it's the sort of item that's timeless anyway. These two children are twins, born to the mother and father shown above.

xoB sends along the original Daily Mail article and the Snopes page that verify that this is, in fact, a case of twins born to the same father. Genetically, you could imagine how it might happen - but the Daily Mail article explains the genetics behind it, and rates the chances of it happening at about a million to one.



skysidhe  Saturday Apr 15 11:56 AM

Makes a mental note ya both are jokesters :p


The blond baby is probably at crawling stage and the dark baby is toddling.

But I did see a program once where two blond hair sweds gave birth to a black baby!

Now that WAS TRUE.



zippyt  Saturday Apr 15 11:59 AM

he looks pleased ;(



skysidhe  Saturday Apr 15 12:30 PM

pleased?Pissed? It's a sad day? They are all unrelated is my guess.

Here is the miracle I think you are looking for.



Shocker  Saturday Apr 15 12:32 PM

OMG! is that the were-rabbit from wallace and gromit?



Perry Winkle  Saturday Apr 15 02:06 PM

naw, that's his wife.



xoxoxoBruce  Saturday Apr 15 04:55 PM

They're twins alright, both parents are mixed race and carry both sets of genes.



bigpeeler  Sunday Apr 16 03:03 AM

I say both those kids are in therapy before they're in kindergarten.



Kagen4o4  Sunday Apr 16 04:24 AM

now we just need a set of identical twins, expect one is black and the other is white



ashke  Monday Apr 17 04:26 AM

You can't get them that way. Identical twins = identical DNA = identical skin tone.



Kagen4o4  Monday Apr 17 06:12 AM

hey. a man can dream



sktzofrenic  Monday Apr 17 07:48 AM

Yes you can...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ashke
You can't get them that way. Identical twins = identical DNA = identical skin tone.
Identical twins does indeed mean the same sperm and therefore the same DNA, but please keep in mind that not all the genotypes in the DNA will express itself as a phenotype. In this case they both have the genes for both black and white skin but only one phenotype in this case expressed itself.

EDIT to say that after reading the snopes article they are fraternal twins not "identical twins" therefore there are two different eggs and sperm which makes it even more likely to occur (although still very rare).


John  Monday Apr 17 10:03 AM

Quote:
You can't get them that way. Identical twins = identical DNA = identical skin tone.
That would be true *if* they were identical twins.

They are not. They are fraternal twins. Two sperm, two eggs, two separate DNA profiles, two children.

In this case, as both parents are mixed-race, one happened to get a set of genes for light skin and one got a set of genes for dark skin. It's not even all that shocking, in theory, it's just very jarring in practice.


John  Monday Apr 17 10:04 AM

... and as soon as I post that, I realise that you're responding to someone else, and suddenly I feel dumb.



dar512  Monday Apr 17 12:29 PM

This reminded me of the "mirror twins" from RAH's Time Enough for Love.



marichiko  Monday Apr 17 12:54 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by sktzofrenic
Identical twins does indeed mean the same sperm and therefore the same DNA, but please keep in mind that not all the genotypes in the DNA will express itself as a phenotype. In this case they both have the genes for both black and white skin but only one phenotype in this case expressed itself.

Identical twins WILL have the same skin color. You are thinking of incomplete dominance or genes that can switch on and off. Multiple alleles (genotype) contribute to skin color (phenotype) in human beings. If you have the identical set of alleles, you will have the identical skin color of your twin. Explanation for those with a scientific bent.


Pie  Monday Apr 17 04:44 PM

Not quite true. It is possible to change the expression of genes without changing the underlying sequences -- see this Wikipedia article on twins

Quote:
Identical twins have identical DNA but differing environmental influences throughout their lives affect which genes are switched on or off. This is called epigenetic modification. A study of 80 pairs of human twins ranging in age from 3 to 74 showed that the youngest twins have relatively few epigenetic differences. The number of differences between identical twins increases with age. 50-year-old twins had over three times the epigenetic difference of 3-year-old twins. Twins who had spent their lives apart (such as those adopted by two different sets of parents at birth) had the greatest difference. (Fraga, et al., 2005).
DNA methylation, histone modification and other processes related to gene activation occur throughout an individual's lifetime. The study of these changes is called epigenetics.


Kagen4o4  Monday Apr 17 07:24 PM

but this does not mean a persons skin colour will change.



xoxoxoBruce  Monday Apr 17 08:17 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by John
... and as soon as I post that, I realise that you're responding to someone else, and suddenly I feel dumb.
Ha ha ha, I'm glad I'm not the only one that happens too.


Pie  Monday Apr 17 08:26 PM

Vitiligo and liver spots are mostly age-related pheonomena. Natural eye color and hair color definitely change over time.

...And have you ever gotten a tan?



tippy  Tuesday Apr 18 07:22 AM

Not sure who is right and who is wrong as to whether this is one of the genes that can be switched on and off in identical twins but:
-there was a case of a white woman in SA during apartheid era whose skin changed colour virtually over night due to some kind of condition that changed the way her melanin receptors worked. she was immediatley ostracised by everyone. (I've googled this but can't find it- saw it on a programme about genetics and how melanin works)
- cases of twins and siblings of different skin colours although rare has happened before. i saw a whole programme on it, inlcuded a scene where one twin complained that the main source of racist taunts at school regarding his skin colour was in fact his own brother (nice). and both parents do not necessarily need to be of mixed race.
- you also get cases where a white/light skinned couple will have a black/dark skinned child because they have mixed race genes several generations back, often unknowingly. There were cases of this happening in America. In times past some families separated off any family members who were not obvioulsy "white" and then buried the whole thing, so thet when the genes re-emerged several generations later everyone was mystified... (from same programme on twins)

you can imagine the accusations!!!

the whole issue of how genes express themselves is totally fascinating.



Kagen4o4  Tuesday Apr 18 07:39 AM

like in family guy.



AureliusVin  Tuesday Apr 18 01:33 PM

I think what ashke was saying is that you can never have identical twins with different skin tones, which is 100% correct.



Pie  Tuesday Apr 18 01:35 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by AureliusVin
I think what ashke was saying is that you can never have identical twins with different skin tones, which is 100% correct.
Again, look at environmental factors -- one twin can't get a tan?!?


Kagen4o4  Tuesday Apr 18 07:25 PM

no, once one twin gets a tan it automatically transfers to the other twin.



wolf  Tuesday Apr 18 09:47 PM

I'm having a problem with my racial math ... assuming mom and dad were both half-black and half-white, then the kids are both half-black and half-white. If the ratio were one-quarter, then they'd be quadroons, but I can't find the specific term for half-and-half.



ashke  Tuesday Apr 18 09:57 PM

Eh, a tan is different from a natural skin tone. And there's a limit on how dark you can get. It's bad for the skin too -__-.



xoxoxoBruce  Tuesday Apr 18 11:40 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolf
I can't find the specific term for half-and-half.
Mermaid?


Kagen4o4  Tuesday Apr 18 11:52 PM

nice



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