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Light pigmentation in North Asians and East Asians

black man
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black man
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April 6th, 2008, 7:16 pm #1

Yuasa et al. 2007: OCA2*481Thr, a hypofunctional allele in pigmentation, is characteristic of northeastern Asian populations
wrote:Individuals homozygous for OCA2*481Thr appear phenotypically normal (Suzuki et al. 2003b; Ito et al. 2006). However, this allele may affect variation in skin color in Japanese because of its hypofunction in pigmentation. Japanese skin type is classified on the basis of an individual’s susceptibility to sunburn and ability to tan: type I, always burns, never tans; type II, moderately burns, moderately tans; type III, never burns, always tans (Satoh and Kawada 1986). Subjects with type I showed statistically higher prevalence rates for actinic keratosis and nonmelanoma skin cancer in comparison with subjects having the other types. The incidence of type I was estimated to be 18.6% in Kasai City, western Japan and 10.3% in Ie Island, Okinawa (Naruse et al. 1997; Nagano et al. 1999). These values coincide with total values of the homozygote and heterozygote for OCA2*481Thr in Honshu and Okinawa. Individuals with OCA2*481Thr may have less resistance to the stress of sunburn (Kawai et al. 2005).
(See here for eye colour statistics collected the old-fashioned way.)

Any comments on the percentages in Yuasa's article (or on the other percentages)?

update: changed topic title from "Light pigmentation in North Asians" into "Light pigmentation in North Asians and East Asians".
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Ebizur
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Ebizur
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June 6th, 2010, 7:54 pm #2

Buryat/Dashbalbar [eastern Mongolia]: n=143, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.241
Khalkha/Ulaan Baator [north-central Mongolia]: n=173, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.130
Japanese/Tottori [Chugoku region]: n=179, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.075
Korean/Kwangju [southwestern Korea]: n=141, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.074
Korean/Seoul [west-central Korea]: n=139, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.068
Han Chinese/Shenyang [Liaoning Province, southern Manchuria]: n=103, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.068
Japanese/Yamagata [Tohoku region]: n=289, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.067
Japanese/Okinawa: n=87, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.057
Han Chinese/Beijing: n=40, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.038
Han Chinese/Xi’an [Shaanxi Province, Northwest China]: n=109, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.037
Han Chinese/Putien [Fujian Province, southern East China]: n=118, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.025
Han Chinese/Changsha [Hunan Province, South-Central China]: n=101, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.025
Turk/West Germany: n=200, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.013
Han Chinese/Wuxi [Jiangsu Province, northern East China]: n=119, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.008
Han Chinese/Huizhou [Guangdong Province, South-Central China]: n=111, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
Nigerian/West Germany: n=31, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
Ghanaian/West Germany: n=36, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
French/Rheims: n=98, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
Indian/New Delhi: n=107, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
German/West Germany: n=291, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000

I suppose the most interesting data points are those for Han Chinese from Shenyang and Turks from Germany. Assuming evolutionary neutrality of OCA2*481Thr, these data points suggest that Han Chinese in at least one part of Northeast China contain significant admixture from a population of the Mongol-Korean-Japanese continuum (probably Manchus, considering the fact that Shenyang is an old capital of the Manchus) and that Turkish immigrants in Germany actually do contain a readily detectable amount of admixture from some source in northeastern Asia, contrary to claims that western Turks do not have any significant genetic connection with Turkic-speaking populations in Central Asia and Siberia.

Also, there seems to be no significant difference in the frequency of OCA2*481Thr between any pair of this study's Japanese and Korean samples, which all fall into a narrow range between Japanese from Okinawa (5.7%) and Japanese from Tottori Prefecture in the Chugoku region of western Honshu (7.5%), i.e. 6.6% ± 0.9%.
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black man
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June 7th, 2010, 2:51 am #3

(Most recent update: added photos)

A comment on North Asian hair colours according to T.I. Alekseeva et al. To be exact, see Т.И.Алексеева, В.А.Бацевич, О.В.Ясина (1990) in "Фотоколориметрическое определение цвета волос в различных этнотерриториальных группах СССР": their finding was that the dark hair colour of many Sakha women is only partly caused by high eumelanin concentration. When eumelanin concentration in the hair of Sakha women is below average, it is supplemented by relatively high phaeomelanin concentration (p. 60, figure 2). As far as I remember the tables, those samples which it concerns (mostly female ones) tend to have a tad less total melanin concentration in their hair than the others.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find any photographic evidence for the effects of raised phaeomelanin concentrations in Sakha hair. As for Westerners, it seems to be assumed that people with more phaeomelanin (in relation to eumelanin) in their hair have sort of reddish or auburn hair. By contrast, the hair of Westerners with relatively less phaeomelanin in their hair was called "dull brown" or "ashy blond" in the internet. This is also what Alekseeva et al. confirm on p. 61 of their article.

Average phaeomelanin concentration values according to the Russian team (sample sizes from n=6 to n=75; see pp. 62-9, tables 1, 3-7):
- Sakha males (age group 18-29): 0,178
- Sakha males (age group 30-39): 0,192
- Sakha males (age group 40-50): 0,207
- Sakha females (age group 18-29): 0,341
- Sakha females (age group 30-39): 0,354
- Sakha females (age group 40-50): 0,357

- Mongun Taiga Tuvan males (age group 18-29): 0,158
- Mongun Taiga Tuvan males (age group 30-39): 0,161
- Mongun Taiga Tuvan males (age group 40-50): 0,162
- Mongun Taiga Tuvan females (age group 18-29): 0,360
- Mongun Taiga Tuvan females (age group 30-39): 0,366
- Mongun Taiga Tuvan females (age group 40-50): 0,316

(Tozha male values are about the same as those of Tuvan males but Todzha females seem to have more eumelanin/less phaeomelanin in their hair than Tuvan females; Tuvans and Todzhans appear to have similar total melanin concentrations in their hair)

As for most of the examined Altai-Sayan Turkic-speakers (Kyzyl Khakass, Kacha Khakass, Sagai Khakass, Abakan Shorians, mountain Shorians, Telengits, Teleuts, Altai-kizhi, Chuisk Kazaks, Erzinsk Tuvans and Dzunkhemchik Tuvans), the phaeomelanin concentration values are mostly lower than those of the Mongun Taiga Tuvans. Same as for geographically more remote North Asians (Chukotka Chukchi, Bering Sea Chukchi, Aliutor Koryaks, Kamchatka Koryaks, Itelmens, Nganasans, Evens, Aleuts).

rankings according to relative melanin (eumelanin/phaeomelanin) concentration (calculations according to the values in the tables on p. 71):
(sample sizes uo to 30 are indicated below)

male samples n > 30:
Chui Kazak: 710/101=7,0; 598/167=3,6
Altai-kizhi: 713/111=6,4; 639/168=3,8
Nganasans: 740/117=6,3; 749/132=5,7
Aleuts: 722/118=6,1; 613/96=6,4 (n=9)
Kyzyl': 527/93=5,7; 559/150=3,7 (n=29)
Bering Strait Chukchi: 696/124=5,6 (n=20); 613/170=3,6
Kamchatka Koryaks: 687/125=5,5 (n=23); 614/149=4,1
Aliutor: 792/143=5,5; 644/211=3,1 (n=25)
mountain Shorians: 684/128=5,3; 564/211=2,7
Sagai: 655/127=5,2; 575/209=2,8
Chukotka Chukchi: 727/142=5,1; 663/183=3,6
Siberian Eskimos: 754/154=4,9; 683/216=3,2
Teleuts: 623/126=4,9; 560/191=2,9
Erzin Tuvans: 612/139=4,4 (n=14); 662/166=4,0
Kacha: 700/163=4,3; 512/242=2,1
Todzha: 668/157=4,3; 555/262=2,1
Dzunkhemchik Tuvans: 597/149=4,0; 554/221=2,5
Mongun Taiga Tuvans: 633/159=4,0; 462/353=1,3
Sakha: 700/193=3,6 (n=115); 419/345=1,2 (n=106)

Arkhangel'sk: 242/104=2,3; 255/97=2,6
Yaroslavl: 267/123=2,2; 242/159=1,5
Voronezh: 331/155=2,1; 216/153=1,4
Novgorod: 257/147=1,7; 206/181=1,1

female samples larger than 30:
Nganasans: 740/117=6,3; 749/132=5,7
Itelmen: 790/137=5,8 (n=20); 697/134=5,2
Evens: 599/117=5,1 (n=11); 617/119=5,2
Kamchatka Koryaks: 687/125=5,5 (n=23); 614/149=4,1
Erzin Tuvans: 612/139=4,4 (n=14); 662/166=4,0
Altai-kizhi: 713/111=6,4; 639/168=3,8
Chui Kazak: 710/101=7,0; 598/167=3,6
Bering Strait Chukchi: 696/124=5,6 (n=20); 613/170=3,6
Chukotka Chukchi: 727/142=5,1; 663/183=3,6
Siberian Eskimos: 754/154=4,9; 683/216=3,2
Teleuts: 623/126=4,9; 560/191=2,9
Sagai: 655/127=5,2; 575/209=2,8
mountain Shorians: 684/128=5,3; 564/211=2,7
Arkhangel'sk: 242/104=2,3; 255/97=2,6
Dzunkhemchik Tuvans: 597/149=4,0; 554/221=2,5
Kacha: 700/163=4,3; 512/242=2,1
Todzha: 668/157=4,3; 555/262=2,1

Yaroslavl: 267/123=2,2; 242/159=1,5
Voronezh: 331/155=2,1; 216/153=1,4
Mongun Taiga Tuvans: 633/159=4,0; 462/353=1,3
Sakha: 700/193=3,6 (n=115); 419/345=1,2 (n=106)

Novgorod: 257/147=1,7; 206/181=1,1

rest:
Tajik: 843/101=8,3 (n=20); 394/369=1,1 (n=20)
Telengit: 713/95=7,5 (n=24); 606/121=5,0 (n=24)
Shorians/Abakan: 719/118=6,1 (n=28); 586/160=3,7 (n=16)
Saami: 327/107=3,1 (n=24); 239/184=1,3 (n=16)

==> These data seem to indicate a pecularity restricted to special Turkic populations of the Altai-Sayan regions and the Sakha. Maybe some western Buryats would join this cluster. But judging from the Even data, the notoriously brownish black hair of, e.g., the Tungus does not have anything to do with that. Rather, I'd guess that it was gene drift in favour of originally "Caucasoid" pigmentation genes in the Altai-Sayan region.

Photos:

Judging from what I read about phaeomelanin in particular, I would have expected more sort of deeply reddish, blackish brown hair like in Caucasians or some southern Europeans. Apparently a less black but more auburn variant of the latter:


http://club.foto.ua/gallery/photos/131504.html

Rather, there seems to be a trend in favour of ashy brownish black hair, which is maybe from their Yukaghir-related Kurykan ancestors. If it's much lighter, it's IMO either dyed or not unlikely to be East European ancestors:
Chodzidlo mentioned something about "golden" hair having been considered beautiful in Sakha women. Similarly, Russian statistics are not in-depth concerning anything special about Sakha pigmentation.

http://www.artlib.ru/index.php?id=11&id ... er_serie=0

http://baldinmission.blogspot.com/2010/ ... -post.html
http://www.webpark.ru/comments.php?id=13441

http://merjevich.ru/photo/?id=245

http://zhdanov.bestpersons.ru/feed/post31107804/

http://www.artlib.ru/index.php?id=36&id ... 5636&idg=2

Gogolev (himself a Sakha) just categorised Sakha hair as "brownish black" etc in his tables. On the other hand, "reddish" occurs in descriptions of East Asian hair as well. So special light conditions might be the key in case that the special phaeomelanin portion in Sakha female hair can be detected by us non-experts at all.

Probably more than one ethnographic group (don't know which groups exactly they belong to but it's not unlikely that North Asian ones, like Buryats and Sakha, are among them):
http://club.passion.ru/viewtopic.php?t= ... &start=105
http://basagan.buryatia.org/
http://www.buryatia.org/modules.php?nam ... sc&start=0
http://koreanspace.ru/index.php?showtopic=183
http://www.pickupforum.ru/lofiversion/i ... 60358.html

As far as I understood, it's a genetic risk factor which can have (but doesn't necessarily have) a noticeable effect on skin colour phenotype. So those whom it concern might seem to be as dark as many other people (though maybe not as dark as the darkest in the population) but yet can't tan.
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ren
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May 19th, 2017, 12:59 am #4

mutation of the OCA2 gene.

One of the gene’s main functions is to help transport tyrosine, an amino acid used as a raw material in synthesising melanin, a pigment that determines skin colouration .

[The skin-colour lightness of individuals involved in the genetic study (A-A stands for Southeast Asia). To make sure none of the recorded changes were caused by exposure to the sun, the skin colour was measured in the subjects’ armpits. Credit: Kunming Institute of Zoology]

The mutated version of the gene has been linked to many diseases, such as albinism, acute eye inflammation, Angelman syndrome (characterised by mental disability and jerky movements), learning difficulties and obsessive eating, to name but a few

http://www.scmp.com/tech/science-resear ... rtners-may

OCA2*481Thr is the alt name of
rs74653330, and along with rs1800414, are the only two polymorphisms found in East Eurasians, so far, controlling pigmentation.
Distribution of two OCA2 polymorphisms associated with pigmentation in East-Asian populations

The name of the topic should be changed since another gene is found affecting mainly East Asians to the exclusion of the Siberian SNP, which may make them lighter, have brown hair and hazel eyes, as have I noticed among some Japanese, Koreans, and NE Chinese. But the East Asian SNP is just as legit in lightening what would otherwise be a Native American color.

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black man
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May 19th, 2017, 1:21 am #5

Ebizur wrote:Buryat/Dashbalbar [eastern Mongolia]: n=143, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.241
Khalkha/Ulaan Baator [north-central Mongolia]: n=173, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.130
Japanese/Tottori [Chugoku region]: n=179, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.075
Korean/Kwangju [southwestern Korea]: n=141, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.074
Korean/Seoul [west-central Korea]: n=139, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.068
Han Chinese/Shenyang [Liaoning Province, southern Manchuria]: n=103, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.068
Japanese/Yamagata [Tohoku region]: n=289, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.067
Japanese/Okinawa: n=87, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.057
Han Chinese/Beijing: n=40, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.038
Han Chinese/Xi’an [Shaanxi Province, Northwest China]: n=109, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.037
Han Chinese/Putien [Fujian Province, southern East China]: n=118, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.025
Han Chinese/Changsha [Hunan Province, South-Central China]: n=101, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.025
Turk/West Germany: n=200, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.013
Han Chinese/Wuxi [Jiangsu Province, northern East China]: n=119, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.008
Han Chinese/Huizhou [Guangdong Province, South-Central China]: n=111, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
Nigerian/West Germany: n=31, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
Ghanaian/West Germany: n=36, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
French/Rheims: n=98, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
Indian/New Delhi: n=107, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000
German/West Germany: n=291, Frequency of OCA2*481Thr=0.000

I suppose the most interesting data points are those for Han Chinese from Shenyang and Turks from Germany. Assuming evolutionary neutrality of OCA2*481Thr, these data points suggest that Han Chinese in at least one part of Northeast China contain significant admixture from a population of the Mongol-Korean-Japanese continuum (probably Manchus, considering the fact that Shenyang is an old capital of the Manchus) and that Turkish immigrants in Germany actually do contain a readily detectable amount of admixture from some source in northeastern Asia, contrary to claims that western Turks do not have any significant genetic connection with Turkic-speaking populations in Central Asia and Siberia.

Also, there seems to be no significant difference in the frequency of OCA2*481Thr between any pair of this study's Japanese and Korean samples, which all fall into a narrow range between Japanese from Okinawa (5.7%) and Japanese from Tottori Prefecture in the Chugoku region of western Honshu (7.5%), i.e. 6.6% ± 0.9%.
Just reviewing Zhong Hua et al. 2011, I noticed the highest frequencies of C-M217+ in Han are those of Dongbei Han, I'd say, some Dongbei Han communities could have their high y hg C percentages from Manchus or other local peoples. E.g., in "92" in Liaoning the frequency is 22,5% and in "94" in Jilin it's even almost 30%. However, the highest percentages in Shandong Han are 15-16% who seem to be from coastal communities (Zhong Hua et al 2011, Wen et al. 2004). By contrast, those Shandong Han who moved to Dongbei were mostly from inland Shandong if I remember correctly with the percentages there being about 10% and less.
ren wrote:OCA2*481Thr is the alt name of
rs74653330, and along with rs1800414, are the only two polymorphisms found in East Eurasians, so far, controlling pigmentation.
Distribution of two OCA2 polymorphisms associated with pigmentation in East-Asian populations

The name of the topic should be changed since another gene is found affecting mainly East Asians to the exclusion of the Siberian SNP, which may make them lighter, have brown hair and hazel eyes, as have I noticed among some Japanese, Koreans, and NE Chinese. But the East Asian SNP is just as legit in lightening what would otherwise be a Native American color.
Changed topic title from "Light pigmentation in North Asians" into "Light pigmentation in North Asians and East Asians".

Apart from that, I'm meanwhile under the impression that light pigmentation in North Asians could have at least two different ancient backgrounds: local (EEA) and other northern Eurasian (maybe from people similar to North European hunter-gatherers). Actually, what Russian anthropologists called "Baikal type" seems to be the result of northern EEAs having mixed with distant relatives of Saami etc. Researchers also confirmed that the aDNA from the Mal'ta site might have resulted in a relatively light-haired phenotype.
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ren
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July 16th, 2018, 10:21 pm #6

Neanderthal Origin of the Haplotypes Carrying the Functional Variant Val92Met in the MC1R in Modern Humans
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