Wednesday, February 20, 2013

FTDNA announces a $39.00 US 12 marker Y DNA test (SALE EXTENDED, ends 5 March)

The sale now ends on 5 March.

See the FTDNA home page: or the press release here.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Matches at 23andme, FTDNA, and AncestryDNA

As of tonight I have 1700 matches at 23andme; 486 matches at FTDNA; and 3630 matches at AncestryDNA. I have identified ancestors with about 20 people at 23andme; 16 people at FTDNA and approximately 100 at AncestryDNA. While I keep a spreadsheet of the chromosome and the match locations at 23andme and FTDNA, I can't do that with AncestryDNA until they release match locations later this year. This makes it difficult to determine who I have actually inherited the match from at AncestryDNA. As it is they do not show all of your shared ancestors when they provide the pedigree link. I have been entering all of the common ancestors for every match into my genealogy program. Ancestry really needs to make the match chromosomes, start and stop locations and centiMorgan (cM)lengths available to their customers.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

MyHeritage offers discounts on FTDNA DNA tests

The following release was received from MyHeritage:

* MyHeritage has launched a special campaign offering deep discounts on DNA tests to mark the first anniversary of the availability of DNA tests on MyHeritage. These tests are offered in partnership with Family Tree DNA. This is part of a giant DNA sale organized by MyHeritage simultaneously across all its websites -, and

* The highlight is the autosomal DNA test, Family Finder, which is priced on MyHeritage now at $169 instead of $289 for a limited period. The Family Finder test is powerful in that it can find relatives for the person being tested, who are descendants from any shared ancestors, 5 generations back, and not just on the direct paternal or direct maternal lines. This low price has never been available before on MyHeritage or Family Tree DNA and is available for a limited period only.

* MyHeritage is discounting also combo DNA tests that include the Family Finder. The most powerful combination available on the market, is called Comprehensive Genome and that is also discounted by a few hundred dollars as part of this special offer.

* MyHeritage Premium and PremiumPlus subscribers enjoy discounts of 10% and 15% respectively on all the DNA tests (other than Family Finder) for a limited period.

* New, unique offer: MyHeritage users can now purchase a PremiumPlus subscription which provides them unlimited storage and all extra features for their family tree, and get a Y-DNA12 test worth $99 for free, or a free mtDNA test (for females). Users can also purchase a MyHeritage Data subscription and receive the DNA test for free.

* The discounted DNA tests are also available now for the first time ever on websites and, owned by MyHeritage. In those websites, subscribers enjoy a 10% discount on the DNA tests. Geni and WorldVitalRecords extend the partnership of MyHeritage and Family Tree DNA and bring it to the many millions of users on Geni and WorldVitalRecords.

* More details and links to place an order for a discounted DNA test can be found on the MyHeritage blog:

Thursday, February 07, 2013

James Lick on analyzing the mtDNA of Richard III with very little data [UPDATED]

As James says:

I thought it would be fun to try analyzing the mtDNA sequence of the presumed Richard III skeleton using my mthap program to see what it comes up with.

Unfortunately, only a 53bp fragment of the ~16569bp mtDNA sequence has been released so far, via this image on the University of Leicester web site [see here for the rest]

(Please note that this is not meant to cast doubt on the identification. It is merely to show how much objective data we can determine based on the currently released information.)


More detail on Richard III's probable mtDNA:

Monday, February 04, 2013

Richard the Third, last Plantagenet King of England, has been found

After an investigation lasting 5 months, a team of researchers at the University of Leicester has confirmed the identity of the skeleton found in September 2012 as that of King Richard the Third. So far a match has been found to his maternal DNA, in mtDNA haplogroup J, and the paternal, Y DNA, is being tested.

Debbie Kennett has a very good post on her blog here: