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\NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Researchers have uncovered additional variants in the MC1R gene, as well as eight variants in other genes, that contribute to an individual's chances of having red hair.

Red hair had previously been linked to coding variations within the MC1R gene, which encodes a G-protein-coupled receptor that is expressed on the surface of skin and hair melanocytes. However, these MC1R variants are only partially penetrant, suggesting a role for other genetic factors in determining red hair.

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