Turns out, whether or not you are a ginger is not determined by the simple genetics of a single gene. In fact, the pigment that causes red hair is likely present in many brunettes. What matters more seems to be how much of the ginger-hiding brunette pigment you have — and the genetics that determine that are a lot more complicated. Which, frankly, makes the brunette-guy-with-red-beard phenomenon make a whole lot more sense.
This is only one of the many human genetics myths that get debunked at the website of geneticist John McDonald. He's dedicated to tearing apart the simple lies-to-children that most of us picked up in grade school, junior high, and high school — oversimplifications of things like tongue rolling, dimples, and eye color that make it easier for kids to understand genetics, but end up leaving adults with a skewed understanding of how genetics actually work.
Image: Red Hair and Freckles, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from fotologic's photostream
When Zoe Stavri woke up with a yeast infection, she had a strange and intriguing idea: what about adding some of her vaginal candida to sourdough starter?
Nick Sousanis, who delivered his doctoral dissertation in comic book form, has a new comic in the current Nature magazine, explaining the last 25 years’ worth of climate talks, as a primer in advance of the Paris climate talks next week.
Randall “XKCD” Munroe’s Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words arrives in stores today: it combines technical diagrams and wordplay in pure display of everything that makes XKCD brilliant and wonderful in every way.
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