Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Blue Eyes -- A Clue To Paternity

Date:
October 23, 2006
Source:
Springer
Summary:
Before you request a paternity test, spend a few minutes looking at your child's eye color. According to studies, published this week in Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, the human eye color reflects a simple, predictable and reliable genetic pattern of inheritance. The researchers show that blue-eyed men find blue-eyed women most attractive. According to the researchers, it is because there could be an unconscious male adaptation for the detection of paternity, based on eye color.

Before you request a paternity test, spend a few minutes looking at your child’s eye color. It may just give you the answer you’re looking for. According to Bruno Laeng and colleagues, from the University of Tromso, Norway, the human eye color reflects a simple, predictable and reliable genetic pattern of inheritance. Their studies1, published in the Springer journal Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, show that blue-eyed men find blue-eyed women more attractive than brown-eyed women. According to the researchers, it is because there could be an unconscious male adaptation for the detection of paternity, based on eye color.

The laws of genetics state that eye color is inherited as follows:

  1. If both parents have blue eyes, the children will have blue eyes.
  2. The brown eye form of the eye color gene (or allele) is dominant, whereas the blue eye allele is recessive.
  3. If both parents have brown eyes yet carry the allele for blue eyes, a quarter of the children will have blue eyes, and three quarters will have brown eyes.

It then follows that if a child born to two blue-eyed parents does not have blue eyes, then the blue-eyed father is not the biological father. It is therefore reasonable to expect that a man would be more attracted towards a woman displaying a trait that increases his paternal confidence, and the likelihood that he could uncover his partner’s sexual infidelity.

Eighty-eight male and female students were asked to rate facial attractiveness of models on a computer. The pictures were close-ups of young adult faces, unfamiliar to the participants. The eye color of each model was manipulated, so that for each model’s face two versions were shown, one with the natural eye color (blue/brown) and another with the other color (brown/blue). The participants’ own eye color was noted.

Both blue-eyed and brown-eyed women showed no difference in their preferences for male models of either eye color. Similarly, brown-eyed men showed no preference for either blue-eyed or brown-eyed female models. However, blue-eyed men rated blue-eyed female models as more attractive than brown-eyed models.

In a second study, a group of 443 young adults of both sexes and different eye colors were asked to report the eye color of their romantic partners. Blue-eyed men were the group with the largest proportion of partners of the same eye color.

According to Bruno Laeng and colleagues, “It is remarkable that blue-eyed men showed such a clear preference for women with the same eye color, given that the present experiment did not request participants to choose prospective sexual mates, but only to provide their aesthetic or attractiveness responses…based on face close-up photographs.” Blue-eyed men may have unconsciously learned to value a physical trait that can facilitate recognition of own kin.

1. Laeng B et al (2006). Why do blue-eyed men prefer women with the same eye color? (Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology DOI 1007.1007/s00265-006-0266-1)


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Springer. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Springer. "Blue Eyes -- A Clue To Paternity." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 October 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/10/061023193617.htm>.
Springer. (2006, October 23). Blue Eyes -- A Clue To Paternity. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/10/061023193617.htm
Springer. "Blue Eyes -- A Clue To Paternity." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/10/061023193617.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

Reuters - US Online Video (July 31, 2014) The Republican-led House of Representatives votes to sue President Obama, accusing him of overstepping his executive authority in making changes to the Affordable Care Act. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite Health Questions, E-Cigs Are Beneficial: Study

Despite Health Questions, E-Cigs Are Beneficial: Study

Newsy (July 31, 2014) Citing 81 previous studies, new research out of London suggests the benefits of smoking e-cigarettes instead of regular ones outweighs the risks. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins