AP, October 27, 2006
London — A pair of British twin boys has been born with different skin color, a rare genetic occurrence according to experts.
Richardson is of mixed race, with Nigerian and English heritage, while the father is white.
A genetics expert at Oxford University says such births are rare, as the genes that cause skin color normally mix together. In this case, he says, it appears the genes for skin color didn’t combine for some reason and the boys may have inherited different genetic codes from their mother.
New Zealand Herald, October 27, 2006
They are the one-in-a-million babies. Kaydon Richardson is black. His twin brother Layton is white.
The boys were born in Middlesbrough, England, on July 23 — four weeks prematurely — with Layton weighing 2.83kg (6lb 4oz) and Kaydon, who arrived 20 minutes later, 2.97kg (6lb 9oz).
Their English-Nigerian mother, Kerry Richardson, aged 27, from Middlesbrough, says that at their birth the twins were “practically the same colour”. “But over the last few months Layton has got lighter and blonder, like his dad [who is white], and Kaydon has gone darker like me.”
Scientists believe their conception is a one-in-a-million chance. Clinical geneticist Dr Stephen Withers said the likelihood of a mixed-race woman having eggs predominantly for one skin colour was rare enough, let alone releasing two of them simultaneously and producing twins.