Identical twins Amelia and Jasmine are thought be the first black and white twins born in the UK, despite coming from the same egg. The girls were born to mum Libby Appleby, 37, from West Rainton, County Durham who is white and her partner Tafadzwa Madzimbamuto, 40, who is black. They are identical or monozygotic twins, meaning they developed from the same zygote, which split and formed two embryos.
Monozygotic twins are always the same sex, share identical blood groups and genetic make-up and always closely resemble each other. There are other reported cases of non-identical twins being born with different coloured skin and eyes to mixed race couples in the UK.
But, in what is believed to be a first in this country, Amelia was born with dark skin, black hair and brown eyes while her sister Jasmine has fair skin, blue eyes and mousy curls, despite being genetically identical. Explaining the phenomenon Dr Claire Steves from the Department of Twin Research, said that multiple genes control skin colour and while identical twins are very likely to share them completely, it is not guaranteed.