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Croat Med J. 2013 Aug;54(4):381-6.

Prediction of eye color in the Slovenian population using the IrisPlex SNPs.

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Vanja Kastelic, National Forensic Laboratory, General Police Directorate, Police, Ministry of the Interior, Vodovodna 95a, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia,



To evaluate the accuracy of eye color prediction based on six IrisPlex single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in a Slovenian population sample.


Six IrisPlex predictor SNPs (HERC2 - rs12913832, OCA2 - rs1800407, SLC45A2 - rs16891982 and TYR - rs1393350, SLC24A4 - rs12896399, and IRF4 - rs12203592) of 105 individuals were analyzed using single base extension approach and SNaPshot chemistry. The IrisPlex multinomial regression prediction model was used to infer eye color probabilities. The accuracy of the IrisPlex was assessed through the calculation of sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value (NPV), and the area under the receiver characteristic operating curves (AUC).


Blue eye color was observed in 44.7%, brown in 29.6%, and intermediate in 25.7% participants. Prediction accuracy expressed by the AUC was 0.966 for blue, 0.913 for brown, and 0.796 for intermediate eye color. Sensitivity was 93.6% for blue, 58.1% for brown, and 0% for intermediate eye color. Specificity was 93.1% for blue, 89.2% for brown, and 100% for intermediate eye color. PPV was 91.7% for blue and 69.2% for brown color. NPV was 94.7% for blue and 83.5% for brown eye color. These values indicate prediction accuracy comparable to that established in other studies.


Blue and brown eye color can be reliably predicted from DNA samples using only six polymorphisms, while intermediate eye color defies prediction, indicating that more research is needed to genetically predict the whole variation of eye color in humans.

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