making it the most red-haired country in the world.According to Britain's DNA, 34.7% of the Irish population carry the allele for red hair, although this doesn't directly translate proportionally into births of red-haired children. Jim Wilson of Britain's DNA study used a sample of 2,343 people, and found red hair occurrence of 6% in Scotland, with 35% overall carrying the allele and Edinburgh having the highest proportion at 40%. The Queen of Morocco, Lalla Salma wife of king Mohammed VI, has red hair.Abd ar-Rahman I also had red hair, his mother being a Christian Berber slave.Red hair is also found amongst the Ashkenazi Jewish populations.Eighty percent of redheads have an MC1R gene variant.Red hair can originate from several changes on the MC1R-gene.In Asia, genetic red hair is rare, but reddish-brown (auburn) hair can be found in the Levant (Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and Palestine), in Turkey, in Caucasia, in Northern Kazakhstan, among Uyghurs and among Indo-Iranians.
The term redhead has been in use since at least 1510.Reddish-brown (auburn) hair is also found amongst some Polynesians, and is especially common in some tribes and family groups.In Polynesian culture reddish hair has traditionally been seen as a sign of descent from high-ranking ancestors and a mark of rulership.In the United States, it is estimated that 2–6% of the population has red hair. In Asia, red hair has been found among the ancient Tocharians, who occupied the Tarim Basin in what is now the northwesternmost province of China.Caucasian Tarim mummies have been found with red hair dating to the 2nd millennium BC.The lower melanin concentration in skin confers the advantage that a sufficient concentration of important Vitamin D can be produced under low light conditions.