Scientific Theories on the Origin of Human Races

  • Dark skin protects against ultraviolet radiation and cancer

  • Light skin allows enhanced formation of vitamin D3

    • Exception Inuit (Eskimos)

  • Selective breeding

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Slide 105 of 109

Several scientific theories have been proposed to explain the origins of the human races. The most prevalent theory to explain the origin of the races is that increased melanin protected people from ultraviolet radiation in the tropics. The problem with this theory is that the cancer that results from excessive UV exposure almost always occurs after the reproductive years. Therefore, the death of people after their Functional and physical units of heredity passed from parent to offspring. Genes are pieces of DNA, and most genes contain the information for making a specific protein.genes have already been passed on could never be selected by evolution. Another theory states that peoples from Northern latitudes must have reduced pigment in their skin to form enough vitamin D3 under the reduced solar luminosity found at the higher latitudes. One problem with this theory is that the Inuits (Eskimos) have dark skin, but live in high latitudes. The most likely theory is that people have selectively chosen to breed with others who look like them. As the perception of beauty has changed, populations have slowly drifted towards the current racial patterns that we now observe.
Last Modified June 21, 2006


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