Sunday, September 27, 2009

Autosomal connections

Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation began a project to test the DNA of 100,000 people. They have recently reached that goal and are now testing only selected individuals. SMGF has made available the Y DNA and mtDNA results from those tests. You can search those results using your own DNA results from another company, or by searching for the name of a person on the pedigree charts submitted by the people tested. In addition to the Y DNA and mtDNA, SMGF is supposed to release a database of autosomal marker results to the public. In this regard it seems they are about to be beaten to press by 23andMe.

A video on autosomal testing is here:

Recently 23andMe started a beta test of a new product, Relative Finder, that will allow persons in their databases to compare autosomal test results and will give you results for genetic cousins with whom you share blocks of genes. The autosomes are all the chromosomes, including the X chromosome, other than the Y chromosome and mtDNA. It appears they will allow people to get in touch with their matches to compare pedigrees. This will allow you to find more genetic cousins than is possible testing only your direct Y DNA or mtDNA line. This also allows females to have matches out side of their mtDNA lines.

The beta test period ends on 30 September 2009. If you are interested in testing, email me and I will put you in touch with some project coordinators who have special codes that give a very low price on the full 23andMe genetic test.

In addition to the Relative Finder program, 23andMe also will provide information on possible health or medical conditions.

This test does not replace the current Y DNA and mtDNA offerings from companies like Family Tree DNA but they supplement that data. FTDNA's database is much larger than that of 23andMe and provides more in-depth testing of Y STR, SNP, and mtDNA full genomes than does 23andMe. Serious genetic genealogists will want to use all of these tests.

Here is the abstract from the American Society of Human Genetics session on Relative Finder's technology:

We can look forward to a time when we can check the autosomal markers in databases at SMGF and 23andMe, as well as the Y DNA and mtDNA databases at SMGF and FTDNA.

Friday, September 18, 2009

FTDNA server problems

Last night Family Tree DNA, FTDNA, instituted several changes to the web pages of the DNA projects they host. Unfortunately, they underestimated the bandwidth needed to service those changes. They are currently working to bring more servers online. I suggest that you not try to use the DNA project web pages at FTDNA until later on this weekend.

Friday, September 11, 2009

DNA Bingo: How to win big

By Scott Norton:

"Using DNA tests to break through brick walls in family history is pretty easy. It's like Bingo: you match the numbers and you win. Your goal is to match the numbers of your DNA test with others and compare pedigrees. Most of the people I've helped have opened new doors, and some have made a real breakthrough. Here are step-by-step instructions to make DNA work for you. (If you need advice or direction about DNA and Family History, there is information at the end of this article.)"

Continued at

Monday, September 07, 2009

Genetics and DNA articles from New England Ancestors website

You will need to be a member of the New England Historic Genealogical Society to access these articles online. They are available in printed copies of NEXUS or New England Ancestors at large public libraries:

Online and in print:

Spring 2009 - Genetics & Genealogy - DNA Analysis Identifies the Origins of Captain Benjamin Frank Noyes
Winter 2009 - Genetics & Genealogy - The Dunham DNA Project
Holiday 2008 - Genetics and Genealogy - Results of a Y-Chromosome DNA Study on Surnames Sisson and Sissons
Fall 2008 - Genetics and Genealogy - Revised Conclusions from the Rice-Royce Y-DNA Study
Summer 2008 - Genetics and Genealogy - The DNA Study of Robert Pepper of Roxbury
Spring 2008 - Genetics & Genealogy - DNA Results Produce a Probable Ancestor for Ephraim Cox of Rowan County, North Carolina
Holiday 2007 - Genetics & Genealogy - The Coddington DNA Study Project
Fall 2007 - Genetics & Genealogy - My “Marginal” Mega mtDNA Match
Summer 2007 - Genetics & Genealogy - Locating DNA Study Participants
Spring 2007 - Genetics and Genealogy - The Rev. Thomas Carter: DNA Project
Winter 2007 - Genetics & Genealogy - Verifying My Lineage with DNA
Holiday 2006 - Genetics & Genealogy - Pushing the Limits of Y-DNA
Fall 2006 - Genetics & Genealogy - Ledbetter Y-Chromosome DNA Project, part 2
Summer 2006 - Genetics & Genealogy - Ledbetter Y-Chromosome DNA Project, part 1
Spring 2006 - Genetics and Genealogy - Interpreting Mutations in Y-DNA Studies
Winter 2006 - Genetics & Genealogy - Using My Y-DNA “Ladder” to Scale My Brickwall
Holiday 2005 - Genetics & Genealogy - Dancing with DNA: The Triumphs and Tribulations of a Y Chromosome DNA Project
Summer 2005 - Genetics & Genealogy - The Y-DNA Signature of Edward Riggs of Roxbury
Spring 2005 - Genetics & Genealogy - DNA Testing Results Settle a Long-Standing Question in the Seeley Family
Fall 2005 - Genetics & Genealogy - Y-DNA Secures Identity of Rice Mohawk Native American with Edmund Rice Haplotype
Winter 2005 - Genetics & Genealogy - Cobb Family Genetics: A Case Study Using DNA
Holiday 2004 - Genetics & Genealogy - Using Mitochondrial DNA in Genealogy
Fall 2004 - Genetics & Genealogy - The Origins of Samuel Rose of Manchester, Vermont

Online Only:

Mental and Neurological Diseases Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. February 15, 2006
Results of Recent Survey on Genetic Genealogy Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. January 30, 2006
Genetic/Genomic Jargon Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. January 20, 2006
Inheritance and Cardiovascular Disease Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. January 11, 2006
Researching Your Mayflower Ancestors: Part VI: Proving your line: Preparing lineage papers that will pass the test Alicia Crane Williams April 18, 2006
Genetic Involvement in Common Disorders Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. November 30, 2005
Genetic Diseases of the Blood Edwin M. Knights Jr. March 23, 2006
Human Genetics: The Keys to Our Existence Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. April 3, 2007
Dealing With New Developments Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. February 23, 2007
Confronted With Cancer Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. January 29, 2007
DNA Banking for Medical Information Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. September 23, 2006
The Gene / Genealogy Forum IV: A Timeline of Genetic Research Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. July 13, 2004
The Gene / Genealogy Forum III Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. May 6, 2004
The Gene / Genealogy Forum II: The Genius of the Genes Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. January 22, 2003
The Gene / Genealogy Forum: Following the Genetic Trails in Genealogy Edwin M. Knights Jr., M.D. December 18, 2003
Mitochondrial DNA: A Genetic and Genealogical Study Thomas H. Roderick, Mary-Claire King, and Robert Charles Anderson November 27, 1992
Roots and Branches: Genealogy and Genetics Miriam Weiner, C.G. November 26, 1988