Hairy Ears

Hairy Ears: a Y-linked trait ? [ Not ] [OMIM 425500]

    Growth of thick hair on the pinnae of the external ears of males has long been presented in genetics textbooks as a Y-linked trait, common in some east Indian populations. Molecular population studies (Lee et al. 2004) indicate that men with hairy ears do not share any common Y-chromosome DNA sequences. Also, frequencies of Y-chromosome haplotypes shared among men with hairy ears are no different than those in non-hairy control groups from the same population. The data thus indicate that hairy-eared men are unrelated and do not share a common Y-linked allele. The trait may instead be a sex-limited trait (like beard growth) influenced by one or more autosomal loci.

All text material ©2009 by Steven M. Carr