Science Questions

Will we all evolve to look more similar?

Sun, 3rd Jun 2007

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Tony, Westcliffe asked:

Historically, we have moved to different continents and evolved some specific traits such as skin colour. As we are now able to travel all over the world, will we eventually all look the same?


The only reason we look different is due to genetic segregation, people werenít hugely mobile historically and they adapted to suit their environment. People in Africa are usually subject to more sun and ultra violet (UV) radiation and so they developed heavily melanised, brown skin to combat the UV. As people migrated north away from Africa, they were exposed to less UV radiation and it became energetically costly to put all that energy in to making our skin brown when we didnít really need it, so it didnít matter if skin was a little paler.

With the mobile populations we have today, thereís a chance that we might see ourselves turning into a more homogeneous mix again.


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