The color of the Eyes

Anthony Tomlinson dalrymple at pplros.demon.co.uk
Mon Feb 20 10:45:00 EST 1995


In article <3i2rqh$fvd at fiona.umsmed.edu> Jim Hutchins,
hutchins at fiona.umsmed.edu writes:
>Eye color is due to the number and distribution of melanin-containing cells
>called `clump cells' in the iris stroma.
>
>The iris is built kinda like this:
>
>
> 
>      ======================    <- anterior epithelium (nearest cornea)
>    /    *   *      *   *       \
>  /   *        *     *    *      \
>|       *        *     *         |  iris stroma with clump cells (*)
>|   *      *             *      /
>\     *        *          *    /
>  \      *       *            
>    \ *********************     } pigment granules in posterior epi. cells
>     ======================     } posterior epithelium (nearest lens)
>
>The `*'s represent the pigmented clump cells.  The pupil is to the left
>of the page.
>
>Albinos lack all pigmented cells in the iris, so the iris appears light pink
>due to its blood supply.  (No *s are present at all).
>
>Blue-eyed people have the posterior layer of pigmented cells, but not many
>pigmented cells in the stroma.
>
>Brown-eyed people have lots of pigmented cells throughout the stroma as well
>as the posterior pigmented layer (like the picture shown).
>
>Hope this helps
>
>Jim

Did you see the other recent post asking about changes in eye colour with
mood?
 The post described a woman whose eyes change from hazel to blue in times
of
 pleasurable excitement (ahem..), and my eyes change from brownish hazel
to
 green, although I can't provide such a salacious correlation with
mood.:-)
Any ideas?  It has always puzzled me.

Anthony



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