Black and White Twins Born to Mixed-Race Couple in Germany

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By Windsor Genova | January 4, 2012 12:34 PM EST

A black twin and a white twin have been born to a German and Nigerian couple in Leipzig, Germany.

Grit Funke, 40, a dental assistant, said they named the twins Leonie and Louisa. Leonie, the white twin, was the first to come out before Louisa, the black twin, she said according to the German paper Bild.

The parents were as surprised as the midwife who delivered the twins.

Doctors say the chance of twins with different colors of the skin being born is one in a million with the different genes from parents causing the mixed colors. The Funke's case is not the first though. In July 2008, a woman in Berlin gave birth to male twins, one with white skin and blue eyes and the other had dark skin and brown eyes.

Parents Stephan Gerth, a German and white, and Florence Addo-Gerth from Ghana named the twin boys Ryan and Leo.

Peter Propping, the couple's doctor and former director of the Institute for Human Genetics at Bonn University, said the black mother may have had some white ancestors or the white father have had black ancestors making the mix-colored twins possible. But Propping said it was also possible that the twins could have inherited only one common skin color.

There were other cases of twins with different skin colors being born. In 2005, British couple Kylie Hodgson and Remi Horder, who both have mixed-race parents, welcome twin baby girls, one of whom grew darker as she grew up.

In 2006, Kerry Richardson, a German of Nigerian and English descent, and Natasha Knight, an Australian of Jamaican and English descent, gave birth to twin girls with different skin, hair and eye colors.

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