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EVOLUTION OF HUMAN SKIN COLOR AND THERMOREGULATION

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Author(s): IBRAIMOV A.I.

Journal: International Journal of Genetics
ISSN 0975-2862

Volume: 4;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 111;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: human skin color | thermoregulation | human body heat conductivity | human evolution.

ABSTRACT
Researchers on human body heat conductivity variability in population have given some reasons to believe that probably dark skin pigmentation of early humans in Africa occurred not only as a means of organism protection against ultraviolet radiation, but as a means able to provide supplementary energy (solar heat) for maintenance of temperature homeostasis in a body. Dark pigmentation has acquired such value also due to the fact that by that time our remote ancestors’ skin was deprived of hair. Early non hairy hominids being homoeothermic organisms should somehow maintain relatively constant level of core temperature. However, early humans not always were able to find sufficient food in order to fully provide organism’s energy demands, including thermoregulation needs. In such conditions organism could compensate energy deficiency through solar radiation. Though thermal energy penetrated into a body through skin is not used for useful physiological work performance in organism (for instance, does not participate in cellular metabolism), solar energy, by heating blood circulating in skin, could promote maintenance of temperature homeostasis in bodies of first people in Africa.
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