Comments on: An AncestryDNA customer journey: Confirming stories and discovering new ones. The official blog of Wed, 01 Oct 2014 19:26:48 +0000 hourly 1 By: Bibbi Hansson Bibbi Hansson Thu, 11 Jul 2013 17:48:57 +0000 What genetical and statistical scientific METHODS do Ancestry’s experts use? It bothers me that I can’t find these facts reported by the experts on your site since they are vital for presumptive customers to evaluate the quality of the results. Should they even buy these tests?


The Reference Database: how did you gather DNA to establish what genetic populations that are specific for certain areas?

a) Did you do your own gathering of DNA in situ at these places?

b) Are you using another company’s reference data bank? In this case: how did THEY gather their population DNA?

c) Are you trusting own customers to send in their DNA and inform you where they – and their ancestors – are from?

d) Other?

I fear that Ancestry do not use scientifically valid methods. The reason for this is what one of your own people wrote above – #15 Jeff Zupan, March 23, 2013 at 2:10 pm – which suggests that this might be the case. He writes “the computer decides, ‘Well, most people who had ancestors from Wales had this same combination of genes, so this person also must have’.

Please, enlighten me!

And – please – let a real expert do it.

By: Sheri Barber McInturff Sheri Barber McInturff Tue, 28 May 2013 21:54:16 +0000 I’m reading/learning that the Ancestry DNA test does not use the y-dna or the mtdna. Is there some way with Ancestry’s test to determine the haplogroup? I’ve read the Seven Daughters of Eve book and would like to be able to identify with one of them. Is that possible with Ancestry’s DNA test or does it require a strict mtDNA test?

By: Nancy Buettner Moore Nancy Buettner Moore Sun, 28 Apr 2013 14:30:45 +0000 Trying to find my heritage. I have no brothers or sisters. My parents and grandparent are deceased. Help.

By: AncestryDNA celebrates DNA Day. Wait, what’s DNA Day? | Ancestry.com AncestryDNA celebrates DNA Day. Wait, what’s DNA Day? | Thu, 25 Apr 2013 19:29:42 +0000 [...] Learn about powerful discoveries from AncestryDNA customer Renee who confirms some old family stories—and discovers a few new ones [...]

By: Jeff Zupan Jeff Zupan Sat, 23 Mar 2013 20:10:40 +0000 #14 Anne Reeves
I’ll try, although I am not an expert in genetic genealogy. In fact, the field is so new, there may not yet be many experts. That’s part of the problem.
This issue has been discussed to death on the Community Support forums (“Get Help” – upper right corner of your Ancestry home page). You might want to poke around there for a while.
There are two main things to keep in mind.
One – counterintuitive as it may seem, the ethnicity projections and the relationship matches are NOT directly related. Ethnicity is based on a comparison of your DNA with a reference database and when individual genes match up, the computer says, “A-ha! There may be some connection here”. After a number of these “A-ha” moments, the computer decides, “Well, most people who had ancestors from Wales had this same combination of genes, so this person also must have”. The matching “cousins” are individuals who have also been tested and these results are specific to you and them. Although the reference database is the same, one result is based on generalizations and the other on specifics. The ethnicity percentage is based on a statistical interpretation of mathematical probabilities, the relative matches are specific between the two individuals.
Two – at this state of the art, and the small size and U.S.-centricity of the reference database, the ethnicity predictions are not as accurate as we would like. FamilyTreeDNA, one of the other major testing labs, only predicts “European” ethnicity. Ancestry is at least trying to narrow it down a bit more.

By: Anne Reeves Anne Reeves Sat, 23 Mar 2013 18:23:37 +0000 No one at Ancestry seems willing to answer my repeated question about their supposed matches to my own DNA reading. That (autosomal) test apparently found that (after much recombination) my DNA derives from two ethnic origins only (despite having several Welsh ancestors): 65% Central European and 35% Scandanavian. Not even 1% unreadable. Yet according to Ancestry they have found matches (??) at both distant and reasonably proximate (4th cousin level) with several people whose DNA readings have NO Central European or Scandanavian traces. That strains credulity. At first I thought that the matches relied solely on surname coincidence; but a couple of the people with whom I have been “matched” have no tree on Ancestry. Credulity strained yet further. Perhaps someone out there might be able to tell me how it is possible to be DNA matched to someone who shares ZERO ethnic origin DNA? If this makes sense.

By: Jeff Zupan Jeff Zupan Thu, 21 Mar 2013 16:16:27 +0000 to #8 I Am Curious: Most of these blog entries seem to be written by Stephen Baloglu, who is the Director of Product Marketing. Make of that what you will.

to #12 Tracy Whittington: The older Genographic test only did either the Y-DNA test (males only) or the mtDNA test (male or female). These have nothing to do with the current autosomal tests at Ancestry or elsewhere. The results, however CAN be entered into Ancestry. On your home page, hover over the DNA tab, then click “Y-DNA and mtDNA tests”. There should be something on that page to instruct you on entering your results.

By: Tracy Whittington Tracy Whittington Fri, 08 Mar 2013 21:56:01 +0000 A few years back, I did the Genographic DNA test, but this was before it gave percentages of genetic ethnicity, etc. Is there any way to use the original test for new results? Can the results be shared among companies (ie can I upload my National Geographic test to Ancestry)?

By: christy daugherty brandt christy daugherty brandt Fri, 08 Mar 2013 16:13:37 +0000 My brother took the dna test a few months ago. I was disappointed that our grandfather,Daniel Webster Daugherty’s side of the family has not shown up. most of the hints I get are some I already had. any suggestions why my grandfather’s side is not more obvious?

By: BCarroll BCarroll Fri, 01 Mar 2013 08:09:58 +0000 Anne, this is a great test to use if you know nothing about your family. It will pick up markers (as explained above) that might connect you to cousins or possibly siblings.

Having taken the test, I can say that the results I’ve been given have panned out quite nicely. And since my brother also did the test, he showed up as a sibling. This might be one way for you to go. There is no guarantee that you will match up with someone but like they say, if you don’t try it you won’t know. I am a curious person by nature and if in your situation I would definitely do the test.

We did find, through a separate Y-DNA test that my brother did, that our surname most probably derives from a woman who had an ancestor of ours out of wedlock. When the results for his Y-DNA came back, the results showed that a very different last name held almost all the same markers as ours. For all intents and purposes, it was a solid match. And that surname tree was well documented and men with that surname lived in the same county in Ireland as did our ancestor.

So, you never know what you might find if you do this autosomal test. At the very least, it will give you an idea where your ancestors are from.

Best of luck to you.