African Royal DNA Project

How to Check Genesis.Gedmatch.com for African Royal DNA Project Matches

October 11, 2017

Note: Any problems understanding to procedures or questions please directed to me or RoyalDNA@DNATestedAfricans.org

*Great website with a ton of information, highly recommended.

 

AdaEze Naja Chinyere Njoku

Here’s a workable solution to help you check to see if you match any African Royal DNA Project Kits.  Because there are so many of you, we cannot compare your DNA for you all. This is the quickest way to check for yourself to see if you match any of the kits we manage. You MUST follow these steps prior to contacting us about the potential DNA match.  This also helps YOU to learn how too use the FREE tools.  

PLEASE REMEMBER THAT WE DO NOT POST GEDMATCH OR GENESIS KIT NUMBERS IN ANY SOCIAL MEDIA. SHARING THE GEDMATCH ON GENESIS NUMBERS IN ANY FORUM, WILL RESULTS IN PERMANENT REMOVAL FOR ALL GROUPS AND PROGRAMS.  PRIVACY AND SAFETY IS MOST IMPORTANT. THIS INCLUDES FTDNA KIT #S AND ANY KIT # THAT YOU RECEIVE REGARDING YOUR ANCESTRY AND DNA UPLOADS.  When sending emails to your Gedmatch and / or Genesis matches, send one email per person.  That is their rule.  No mass emails.  If you are caught, Gedmatch may delete your data and you lose access. 

 

  • Register at this link https://genesis.gedmatch.com/ if you have not done so. If you register and get a notice that the email you are using already exists, simply log into the link with your Gedmatch.com log in credentials. (Please read the website first before making a decision to upload your DNA Raw data)

  • Upload your DNA Raw Data. It may take a day or 2 for your matches to populate.

  • If any African Royal appears on your match list, you MUST complete the one to one comparison. The CMs must be at least 7 and the SNPs must be at least 700 to be a CONFIRMED match.  Click on your Genesis kit #. You will see a list of matches. You are almost there! 

  • If you do not see them on your list, you are not a match. Their names are distinctive and includes ethnic group(s) and they will include their ethnic groups(s).

  •  If you see any of the Royals’ names there, click on the letter “A” beside their name . This will allow you to do a one to one comparison.

 

The one to one comparison will show the chromosomes that you match on .

The above image shows 4 rows of matching for Chromosome 1.  The Centimorgans (CMs) on 1 row MUST be at least 7 and the the SNPs must be 700.  You cannot add up all of them to meet this requirement

The image below shows on row 1 that this match has 47.2 CMs and 6,993 SNPs.  That means they are a legitimate match.

 

  • If the above requirements are met, copy the chromosome details that you match on and draft an email to RoyaLDNA@DNATestedAfricans.org . Paste the info in the email .  

 

  • We will then provide you with contact Info for your DNA match if they provided it to us. 

See our DNA Tested African Descendants group guidelines http://goo.gl/forms/Om5AqGGahm 

Strictly Roots!! 

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DNA Test Options, Indigenous African Results and More

DNA Test Options, Indigenous African Results and More

DNAtestedafricans.org for further information. DNAtestedafricans.org is not a testing company and does not suggest any of the companies listed in this article. We offer a connection to purchase DNA kits, but it is your decision based on what you want to test for ancestry. The top three testing companies based on company reputation, services offered, testing methods, software grade, research and scientific evidence, CLIA and FDA compliance (US based) customer reviews, price, customer service and return policy.

#1. CRI Genetics (Cellular Research Institute)

#2. Family Tree DNA

#3 Living DNA Your Ancestry

for further reading go to http://www.geneticsdigest.com/best_ancestry_genealogy_dna_test

 

DNA Test can be done at 12, 25, 37, 67 or 111 markers. I recommend the 67-marker test, it gives you the best results for your money.

For more information or questions contact: DNAtestedafricans.org or africanamericangenealogydna.com

August 28, 2017

African Greetings Family!

   We hope you are all doing well.  Let’s start with a video of brother Saad Tafida.  He is an Indigenous African that tested to learn about his ancestry and to find his family in the Diaspora.  He is Fulani.  (He will tell you more about that on the video so we don’t want to spoil it).

   As it turns out, he is my eldest daughter’s DNA match.  She is able to watch these videos and learn more about a line of her culture and for that, we thank Saad tremendously!  We need more like him to share and explore with us.

Here are his results

He then downloaded his DNA raw data from the website that he tested with.  Then he uploaded to Gedmatch.com He speaks about that in his video.  He found more relatives that NEVER knew their ancestry.

 He uploaded the DNA Raw data to a few websites to find more family.  Click here to see how to do it.   https://www.dnatestedafricans.org/single-post/2017/07/13/Finding-More-DNA-Cousins-for-FREE

BE ENCOURAGED!!  More Indigenous Africans are testing and are looking for us as well too!!  

Now, here is some info on the current sale prices for a few major DNA testing companies.  You can click on each image to go to the website.  So now, let’s talk about the tests.

My Heritage DNA Test Kit $69.00

 

 

 

 

 

Everyone has asked, how do I get started on my DNA testing journey. This is a great place to start. Save this note because it is very useful to return to in the future.. Please read below.

We are NOT a DNA testing company. We do NOT sell DNA tests or profit from the sales of any tests. You must purchase the DNA test on your own. We simply explain what is available for YOU to research and determine what works for you. The information is provided by those of us that have DNA tested with EACH of the companies listed below.

We are a community of Volunteers focused on the ACRO concept. ACRO means African Culture and Reconciliation Organization. We coordinate cultural reception and integration via language classes, naming ceremonies and other enriching events after you have received your results.

We facilitate reconciliation of the DNA Tested African Diaspora and their African ethnic groups of ancestry. We provide you with 3rd party tools for YOU to research so you can determine which DNA Testing company and /or 3rd party tools for family tree building are most useful to you. We provide helpful templates for initial communications with your DNA matches as well as methods on how to get the most out of your test results.

 

Here is a good starting point to Research your AtDNA, MtDNA and the male YDNA. Please see the chart below.

Green is the autosomal DNA that can be tested by Ancestry, FTDNA Myheritage, and 23andme (they also provide DNA matches)

Blue is the YDNA that can be tested by FTDNA’s YDNA test (they provide DNA matches) and African Ancestry (they do NOT provide DNA matches)

Red is the MtDNA that can be tested by FTDNA’s Mt DNA test (they provide DNA matches) and African Ancestry (they do NOT provide DNA matches)

23andMe DBA Test Kit

“The information …..is meant to provide a very simple explanation of your Y-DNA and MtDNA Ancestry used for genealogical purposes. Scientists estimate that the total amount of Y-DNA of a man is less than 1% and the total amount of MtDNA in either a man or a woman is less than 1%. It is important to understand that after taking a Y-DNA and an MtDNA test, the majority of everyone’s DNA remains untested and it is called Autosomal DNA, with another 5% of a female’s DNA or 2 1/2% of a male’s DNA being x-chromosomal DNA. In a man this would mean roughly 95.5% of his DNA is Autosomal and in a woman that figure would be roughly 94%. “

Click here or copy and paste ~~ > https://phillipsdnaproject.com/faq-… ~~

Source: https://phillipsdnaproject.com/faq-sections/312-your-total-dna-makeup

UPDATE: We have been advised that African Ancestry does not do the Admix test anymore. Please check with their website to confirm.

Subscribe at www.dnatestedafricans.org

1. http://www.ancestry.com/ $79 Autosomal test ( saliva ) that analyses DNA from all of the contributors of your DNA. Both males and females can take this test. They test 700,000 markers !! Your DNA is tested 40 times and they provide you with percentages of your ancestry and a list of DNA matches that you can contact. You can research with those DNA matches to determine if they match on your mother’s side or your father’s side of the family. The DNA kit is mailed to you, you provide a small sample of saliva and follow the instructions to activate the kit. It takes about 6 to 8 weeks to receive a email from ancestry notifying you that your results are in. Sign into your ancestry account and explore your results.

You can download your DNA raw data from ancestry and upload it to Gedmatch.com ( https://www.gedmatch.com/login1.php ) for FREE to find more DNA matches. This is a website that allows us that have tested at FTDNA.com, 23andme.com, Wegene.com, and Ancestry.com , to upload there to find more family. And yes! It is FREE.

You can also upload your DNA raw data to https://www.familytreedna.com/ for FREE.

Limitations of Ancestry: This test will not tell you the African ethnic groups that you share ancestry with. However, you may find African DNA matches that can tell you their ethnic group(s) and where they come from. Also when you upload to Gedmatch, you may find African matches that have also uploaded there.

www.ancestry.com

Ancestry.com Results of an African American

 

 

 

2. https://www.23andme.com/ $99 Autosomal test ( saliva ) that analyses DNA from all of the contributors of your DNA. Both males and females can take this test. They provide you with percentages of your ancestry and a list of DNA matches that you can contact. You can research with those DNA matches to determine if they match on your mother’s side or your father’s side of the family. The DNA kit is mailed to you, you provide a small sample of saliva and follow the instructions to activate the kit. Check with 23andme to determine the current wait time for their test results. Once you receive the email that your results are in, sign into your 23andme account and explore your results.

Advantage:  Over 4 million people around the world have DNA tested.  If you match them, you will see them in your DNA match list when you sign into your account.  You can download your DNA raw data from 23andme and upload it to Gedmatch.com (https://www.gedmatch.com/login1.php ) for FREE to find more DNA matches. This is a website that allows us that have tested at FTDNA.com, 23andme.com, Wegene.com, and Ancestry.com , to upload there to find more family. And yes! It is FREE.

You can also upload your DNA raw data to https://www.familytreedna.com/ for FREE.

Limitations of 23andme: This test will not tell you the African ethnic groups that you share ancestry with. However, you may find African DNA matches that can tell you their ethnic group(s) and where they come from. Also when you upload to Gedmatch, you may find African matches that have also uploaded there.

YOU research, YOU decide

https://www.23andme.com/

23andme.com Results

 

 

3. https://www.familytreedna.com/ Starting at $79 for the family finder test.   ( cheek swab ) **If you already DNA tested at ancestry.com or 23andme.com , please go to FTDNA and upload your DNA raw data from those sites to this one for FREE. It will SAVE you the cost of $99. FTDNA’s Autosomal DNA test is $99. (Keep in mine that your autosomal DNA is 50 % from your father and 50% from your mother) 

They also have Mtdna tests for your Direct maternal line and YDNA tests for your direct paternal line. Only males can take the YDNA test. See the website for prices on their MtDNA and YDNA tests.

Regarding their Autosomal DNA test, they provide you with percentages of your ancestry and a list of DNA matches that you can contact. You can research with those DNA matches to determine if they match on your mother’s side or your father’s side of the family. The DNA kit is mailed to you, you provide a small sample of saliva and follow the instructions to activate the kit. Check with FTDNA to determine the current wait time for their test results. Once you receive the email that your results are in, sign into your FTDNA account and explore your results. You can download your DNA raw data from FTDNA and upload it to Gedmatch.com ( https://www.gedmatch.com/login1.php ) for FREE to find more DNA matches. You can download your DNA raw data from FTDNA and upload it to Gedmatch.com ( https://www.gedmatch.com/login1.php ) for FREE to find more DNA matches. This is a website that allows us that have tested at FTDNA.com, Myheritage.com , 23andme.com, Wegene.com, and Ancestry.com , to upload there to find more family. And yes! It is FREE.

Limitations for FTDNA: Their African database is LOW so you may not have very many matches. If you have a higher percentage of NON- African DNA, you may have a lot of DNA matches.

FTDNA.com Results

 

4.  Visit www.MyHeritage.com to see if their company is for you. Starting at $89 (often times on sale  for around $69) . Their AtDNA (autosomal) is a (cheek swab) test.  The Autosomal DNA test, provides you with percentages of your ancestry and a list of DNA matches (actual relatives)  that you can contact. You can research with those DNA matches to determine if they match on your mother’s side or your father’s side of the family. The DNA kit is mailed to you, you provide a small sample of saliva and follow the instructions to activate the kit. (Keep in mine that your autosomal DNA is 50 % from your father and 50% from your mother) 

Advantage:  This website accepts DNA raw data from ancestry.com , FTDNA.com and 23andme.com.  So if you already tested with these other companies, you only need to upload the data.  If you test with this company, you can download your DNA raw data from MyHeritage and upload it to Gedmatch.com ( https://www.gedmatch.com/login1.php ) for FREE to find more DNA matches. This is a website that allows us that have tested at FTDNA.com, Myheritage.com , 23andme.com, Wegene.com, and Ancestry.com , to upload there to find more family. And yes! It is FREE.

Limitations:  The DNA match database is still growing so you may not have a lot of matches  (cousins) on Myheritage.  However, uploading the DNA raw data to www.Gedmatch.com will surely give you more DNA matches.  

MyHeritage.com Results

 

5. Visit http://africanancestry.com/home/ to see if their company is for you. Starting at $200. Their MtDNA test about 8 markers of the HVR1 region. I would not recommend this company as a first choice at this point but it may be good after you have found that you have an African haplogroup with another company like FTDNA. This is a cheek swab test 

Advantage: If you took the YDNA test or MTDNA test with FTDNA and found that you have an African haplogroup, you may consider contacting them and paying around $200 to receive a certificate stating what African ethnic group(s) you share ancestry with. Their MtDNA and YDNA test starts at $285. ** About 35% of African Americans do NOT have African Mtdna line or YDNA line. See their website for details. Make an INFORMED decision.

Limitations of African Ancestry: They are the most costly DNA testing company for their YDNA, MtDNA test, and Autosomal. They do not test as many DNA markers as the other companies. The DNA raw data cannot be uploaded to any other website. They do not provide any DNA matches. If your test reveals your MtDNA line or your YDNA line is not African, you will not be able to find African relatives or African ethnic groups through them. You will need to test with one of the above companies. Source: http://shop.africanancestry.com/Mat… and http://shop.africanancestry.com/Pat… .

This test will not tell you that you are 100% of anything. It will not provide ANY percentages of your ethnicity. The percentages that they provide is a sequence similarity score. They test LESS than 1% of your DNA. The Cofounder can explain this to you.

 

AfricanAncestry.com Certificate Example

 

 

Make an INFORMED decision.

Please visit the website for each DNA test, research it and determine which company works for YOU!!

www.DNATestedAfricans.org

Note: All images belong to their perspective companies. This is for educational purposes to encourage research in order to make an informed decision about DNA testing.

Originally posted : https://www.facebook.com/notes/dna-tested-african-descendants/getting-started-dna-testing-options/1540241299613571/

 

Centimorgans in Genetic Geealogy

Reprinted from the International Society of Genetic Genealogy August 2, 2017. No adjustment was made to this article and is the ISOGG position.

 

In genetic genealogy, a centiMorgan (cM) or map unit (m.u.) is a unit of recombinant frequency which is used to measure genetic distance. It is often used to imply distance along a chromosome, and takes into account how often recombination occurs in a region. A region with few cMs undergoes relatively less recombination. The number of base pairs to which it corresponds varies widely across the genome (different regions of a chromosome have different propensities towards crossover). One centiMorgan corresponds to about 1 million base pairs in humans on average. The centiMorgan is equal to a 1% chance that a marker at one genetic locus on a chromosome will be separated from a marker at a second locus due to crossing over in a single generation.

The genetic genealogy testing companies 23andMeAncestryDNAFamily Tree DNA and MyHeritage DNA use centiMorgans to denote the size of matching DNA segments in autosomal DNA tests. Segments which share a large number of centiMorgans in common are more likely to be of significance and to indicate a common ancestor within a genealogical timeframe.

The centiMorgan was named in honor of geneticist Thomas Hunt Morgan by his student Alfred Henry Sturtevant. Note that the parent unit of the centiMorgan, the Morgan, is rarely used today.

23andMe and Family Tree DNA both use HapMap to infer their centiMorgans.

centiMorgans vs megabases

CentiMorgans are interpolated numbers that take into consideration each area of a chromosome and its propensity to recombine. This means if two cousins share 40 cM on chromosome 1, and two different cousins share 40 cM on chromosome 5, they both can be predicted to share a certain degree of relationship statistically. Megabases vary slightly in different locations so that in the same scenario, if both sets shared 40 Mb pairs, it would be more difficult to ensure they are of a similar degree of relation without further accounting for location, chromosome and other factors.[1]

Ann Turner provides a useful explanation: “I think of the cM as being a unit of ‘effective’ distance. As an analogy, a mile is a fixed quantity (5280 feet), and so are megabases. But the probability that a person can walk a mile in 20 minutes is more fluid. If the terrain is very rough, the “effective” distance of a literal mile might be more like two miles if you’re trying to arrive at a certain time. We’re more interested in the probability that a segment will be passed on intact than the size of the segment in Mb”.[2]

As the cM is an empirical measure, based on recombination events in a particular dataset of parents and offspring, it can vary somewhat from study to study. This set of maps for each chromosome shows that the general shape of the centiMorgan vs megabase curve is similar for two datasets, but the absolute values are not quite the same:

http://web.archive.org/web/20070113005025/http://compgen.rutgers.edu/maps/compare.pdf

cm values per chromosome

The following table compares cM values per chromosome at Family Tree DNAGEDmatch, and 23andMeAncestryDNA uses 3475 as the total cM according to the help screen for confidence level in a DNA match. This presumably excludes the X chromosome.

CM chromosome FTDNA&GEDMatch&23andMe.jpg

Probability of crossover

The following chart shows the estimated probability that a segment will be affected by a crossover. The chart does not take into account some variables such as inversions and different recombination rates for males and females.

Crossover probability centiMorgans.png

Converting centiMorgans into percentages

In order to get an approximate percentage of shared DNA from a Family Tree DNA Family Finder test, take all of the segments above 5 cM, add them together and then divide by 68.

The way the calculation works is that your total genome in cMs with the Family Finder test is 6770 cM. A half-identical match (such as a parent/child) is 3385 cM. This number has to be doubled to represent both the maternal and paternal sides giving a total of 6770 cM. Matt Dexter explains: “The reason the number is not 6770 or 6800, but rather 68, is that it saves an additional step doing the math to convert an answer to percent. For example, 3385 / 6770 = .5 then as a second step, .5 times 100 = 50%. Using 68 to start with saves the added math step. So (3385 / 6800) * 100 is the same thing as 3385 / 68, which results in = 50%.”[3]

Human reference genome

The centiMorgan totals per chromosome are based on the Human Reference Genome. 23andMe and Ancestry DNA use Build 37. Family Tree DNA use Build 37 for matching but Build 36 for segment boundaries in the Chromosome Browser. Raw data files are provided in both formats. Build 37 filled in quite a few gaps, and the number of base pairs in each of the chromosomes was longer in Build 37 as compared to Build 36. Consequently the cM totals per chromosome are lower for Family Finder than they are for 23andMe. GedMatch use Build 36, and convert AncestryDNA and 23andMe data from Build 37 to Build 36 for backward compatibility.

The latest version of the Human Reference Genome, Build 38, was released in December 2013. However, none of the companies have as yet adopted Build 38 and there is a “gentleman’s agreement” in place to stick with Build 37 for the present time.

Further reading

Resources

DNA Triangulation, What?

Triangulation is a term derived from surveying to describe a method of determining the Y-STR or mitochondrial DNA ancestral haplotype using two or more known data points. The term “Genetic Triangulation” was coined by genetic genealogist Bill Hurst in 2004 Triangulate

Here is a 3-step process for Triangulation: Collect, Arrange, Compare/Group.

  1. Collect all the Match-segments you can. I recommend testing at all three companies (23andMe, FTDNA, and AncestryDNA), and using GEDmatch. But, wherever you test, get all of your segments into a spreadsheet. If you are using more than one company, you need to download, and then arrange, the data in the same format as your spreadsheet. Downloading/arranging is best when starting a new spreadsheet. Downloading avoids typing errors, but direct typing is sometimes easier for updates. I recommend deleting all segments under 7cM – most of them will be IBC/IBS (false segments) anyway, and even the ones which may be IBD are very difficult to confirm as such. You are much better off doing as much Triangulation as you can with segments over 7cM (or use a 10cM threshold if you wish), and then adding smaller segments back in later, if you want to analyze them. NB: Some of your closer Matches will share multiple segments with you – each segment must be entered as a separate row in your spreadsheet. The minimum requirement for a Triangulation with a spreadsheet includes columns for MatchName, Chromosome, SegmentStartLocation, SengmentEndLocation, cMs and TG. Most of us also have columns for SNPs, company, testee, TG, and any other information of interest to you. Perhaps I need a separate blog post about spreadsheets… ;>j
  1. Arrange the segments by sorting the entire spreadsheet (Cntr-A) by Chromosome and Segment StartLocation. This is one sort with two levels – the Chromosome column is the first level. This puts all of your segments in order – from the first one on Chromosome 1 to the last one on Chromosome 23 (for sorting purposes I recommend changing Chromosome X to 23 or 23X so it will sort after 22). This serves the purpose of putting overlapping segments close to each other in the spreadsheet where they are easy to compare.
  1. Compare/Group overlapping segments. All of these segments are shared segments with you. So with segments that overlap each other, you want to know if they match each other at this location. If so this is Triangulation. This comparison is done a little differently at each company, but the goal is the same: two segments either match each other, or they don’t (or there isn’t enough overlapping segment information to determine a match). All the Matches who match each other will form a Triangulated Group, on one chromosome – call this TG A (or any other name you want). Go through the same process with the segments who didn’t match TG A. They will often match each other and will form a second, overlapping TG, on the other chromosome – call this TG B. [Remember you have two of each numbered chromosome.] So to review, and put it all a different way: All of your segments (every row of your spreadsheet) will go into one of 4 categories:
  • – TG A [the first one with segments which match each other]
  • – TG B [the other, overlapping, one with segments which match each other]
  • – IBC/IBS [the segments don’t match either TG A or TG B]
  • – Undetermined [there are not enough segments to form both TG A and TG B                            and/or there isn’t enough overlapping data to determine a match.]
  • NB: None of the segments in TG A should match any of the segments in TG B.
  1. At GEDmatch – the comparisons are easy. Just compare two kit numbers using the one-to-one utility to see if they match each other on the appropriate segment. The ones that do are Triangulated. You may also use the Tier1 Triangulation utility or the Segment utility. I prefer using the one-to-one utility and Chrome.
  1. At 23andMe you have several different utilities:
  • – Family Inheritance: Advanced lets you compare up to 5 Matches at a time. You may also request a spreadsheet of all your shared segments; sort that by chromosome and SegmentStart, and check to see if two of your Matches match each other. The ones that do are Triangulated.
  • – Countries of Ancestry: Sort a Match’s spreadsheet by chromosome and SegmentStart, search for your own name, and highlight the overlapping segments. The Matches on this highlighted list who are also on overlapping segments in your spreadsheet are Triangulated (the CoA spreadsheet confirms the match between two of your Matches)
  1. At FTDNA it’s a little trickier, because they don’t have a utility to compare two of your Matches. So the most positive method is to contact the Matches and ask them to confirm if they match your overlapping Matches, or not. The ones that do are Triangulated. An almost-as-good alternative is to use the InCommonWith utility. Look for the 2-squigley-arrows icon next to a Match’s name, click that, and select In Common With to get a list of your Matches who also match the Match you started with. Compare that list of Matches with the list of list of Matches with overlapping segments in your spreadsheet. Matches on both lists are considered to be Triangulated. Although this is not a foolproof method, it works most of the time. And if you find three or four ICW Matches in the same TG, the odds are much closer to 100%. Remember, every segment in your spreadsheet must go in one TG or the other, or be IBC/IBS, or be undetermined. If a particular Match, in one TG, is critical to your analysis, then try hard to confirm the Triangulation by contacting the Matches.
  1. AncestryDNA has no DNA analysis utilities. You need to convince your Matches to upload their raw data to GEDmatch (for free) or FTDNA (for a fee), and see the paragraphs above.

Comments to improve this blog post are welcomed.

How 23andMe identifies your DNA Relatives

Scientific Details

Learn about your DNA Relatives, the diverse group of 23andMe customers who have DNA in common with you. Only individuals who have chosen to participate in DNA Relatives are the subject of this report.

How 23andMe identifies your DNA Relatives

To identify your DNA Relatives, we use an algorithm that finds segments of your DNA that are identical to DNA segments of other 23andMe customers. When these segments are sufficiently long, we infer that they were inherited from a recent common ancestor. These segments are known as “identical by descent,” or IBD. Our algorithm searches for these matches across virtually your entire genome, so we can identify DNA Relatives on any branch of your family tree.

Note: IBD/Half IBD:

The comparison results in this feature displays shared segments of DNA on separate lines representing each chromosome pair, and labels the shared segments as Half IBD, or identical by descent. Because you inherit one half of your DNA from your mother and the other half from your father, IBD segments typically occur on only a single chromosome. Half IBD refers to the amount of the genome in centiMorgans (cM) that contains an IBD segment on either chromosome. The percent DNA shared in DNA Relatives is based on this number.

Your half IBD and shared segments vary based on the closeness of your relationship with the matches with whom you are comparing. Closer relatives will share thousands of cM and many segments in common; more distant relatives may share only one. For some of your shares, if you connected outside of DNA Relatives, you may not share any segments at all.

Every time DNA is passed from one generation to the next, the two chromosomes in each pair are randomly shuffled with each other in a process called recombination. Then, only half of this new DNA — one set of chromosomes — is passed down to each child. The total amount of DNA passed down from an ancestor is cut approximately in half each generation. Through this process, long inherited segments are broken up generation by generation into multiple shorter ones and sometimes lost altogether.

Despite all of this generational shuffling, DNA Relatives is highly sensitive and can pick up matches ranging from siblings and uncles to distant eighth cousins — individuals that share great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandparents with you. It may not always be obvious how you share a connection with someone, but that’s where our DNA Relatives tool comes in. Visit the tool to find out more about your matches and get in touch to learn about your family history.

See our Customer Care pages for more information:

Shared segments between cousins

Inheritance family tree graphic.

A closer look at the matching segment

An example graphic showing a matching segment between you and your cousin.

Sources of information used in this report

The Your DNA Family report provides aggregated summaries of several attributes of your DNA Relatives. The following information sources are used in the report:

Report Section
Source
Close to distant DNA Relatives

Computed IBD results from the DNA Relatives tool.

Locations of your DNA Relatives

Answers to survey questions by your DNA Relatives.

Ancestries of your DNA Relatives

Computed results from the Ancestry Composition report.

Traits and behaviors in your 23andMe DNA Family

Answers to survey questions by your DNA Relatives.

Traits in Your DNA Family

Discover Your Roots with DNA

Source: DNA Testing Advisor (www.dna-testing-adviser.com/african-dna-test) Access on May 18, 2017

Discover Your Roots
with an African DNA Test

African Outline

Many African Americans and others are using an African DNA test to get answers about their ethnic ancestry.

Typical questions include the following:

  • How much of my genetic heritage is African?
  • What regions of Africa do my ancestors come from?
  • Where does the remainder of my heritage come from?
  • Is my African ancestry from my father’s lineage or my mother’s?
  • Do my physical features reflect African ancestry or something else?

Fortunately, there are several reasonably-priced African DNA tests that answer these and other questions about one’s ethnic ancestry.

The tests all use home test kits and sample collection is easy and painless. Depending on which company you use, you might wipe some cells from inside your cheek with a little swab or spit some saliva into a tube. No blood is required.

Here are my top seven recommendations for anyone interested in an African DNA test.

1. Ancestry DNA

AncestryDNA recently rose to the top of this list. Both men and women can take the test and it will identify other people in the database who share common ancestors with you. It is an autosomal test similar in technology to Family Finder and 23andMe, discussed below.

The test includes an Ethnicity Estimate that summarizes the percentage contributions of different regions of the world to your overall ancestry. That estimate now breaks African Ancestry into nine regions:

  • Africa North
  • Senegal
  • Ivory Coast / Ghana
  • Benin / Togo
  • Cameroon / Congo
  • Mali
  • Nigeria
  • Africa Southeast Bantu
  • Africa South-Central Hunter-Gatherers

This is the first widely recognized, legitimate DNA test to provide this detailed a breakdown of African ancestry

2. Family Finder, which includes Population Finder

Family Finder is an autosomal DNA test from Family Tree DNA. It’s widely used by genealogists, including those interested in African American genealogy.

The company will compare your DNA against a database of other users to find genetic matches. Most often these genetic matches will be cousins, having a common ancestor with you somewhere in the last five or so generations.

By emailing your matches you can connect with previously unknown relatives and learn much more about your family tree.

As part of the Family Finder test, you receive a myOrigins report, formerly called Population Finder, where the company compares your DNA with over 60 reference populations from around the world. This is a biogeographical analysis of the DNA you received from ALL of your ancestors.

The African part of your DNA may place you in any of four sub continental groups based on similarities to certain scientifically studied populations. The groups and populations are as follows:

  • Central African: Biaka Pygmy, Mbuti Pygmy
  • East African: Bantu (Kenya)
  • Southern African: Bantu (South Africa), San
  • West African: Mandenka, Yoruba

Very few people outside Africa are 100% African. Population Finder will classify the remaining portion of your ancestry using other populations.

3. Y-DNA Test at Family Tree DNA

Family Tree DNA also offers a Y-DNA test, which tracks your paternal line. Since only men have a Y-chromosome, only men can take this test. But women can still test a man from their paternal line, e.g. a brother, a father, a brother of your father, or a son of your father’s brother.

Like Family Finder, this test finds genetic matches who share a common ancestor. But with the Y-DNA test you know the common ancestor has to be a male in the direct paternal line like your father’s father’s father etc.

The Y-DNA test will also predict a man’s Y-DNA haplogroup. And many haplogroups are clearly tied to origins in sub-Saharan Africa. This is the real indicator of your paternal line’s ethnic ancestry.

TIP: If you’re interested in finding genetic matches, you should order the Y-DNA 37 test, which checks 37 markers. But if you’re only interested in determining your haplogroup, you only need 12 markers. I suggest you go to Family Tree DNA and look for the combination package of Family Finder plus Y-DNA 12. The combo price is an excellent buy.

If you later decide that you want to discover your precise position in the Y-DNA tree of life, you can upgrade to more markers or even order a Deep Clade test. That will tell you exactly which subclade of your haplogroup you’re in. In many cases this can tighten the geographic origins of your paternal line.

4. mtDNA Test at Family Tree DNA

Both men and women have mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to test. But only women pass it on to their children. So mtDNA is the test to track your maternal line. That’s your mother’s mother’s mother etc.

As with the test described previously, you will probably see matches with other users. But mtDNA mutates so slowly that your common ancestors may have lived thousands of years ago. That makes mtDNA less useful than Y-DNA as a genealogy tool.

Still, mtDNA also has a haplogroup that relates directly to the origins of your maternal line. And some of those are clear indicators of African origin.

5. 23andMe Which Includes Ancestry Composition

23andMe is another autosomal DNA test like Family Finder. This test can also serve as an African DNA test, because it has an Ancestry Composition feature that tells you what parts of the world your ancestors lived a few hundred years ago.

This admixture report is similar to the Population Finder feature of the Family Finder test. It reports on African Ancestry from these three regions:

  • West African
  • East African
  • Central and South African

However, if you also test at least one of your parents on 23andMe, this test can split your ancestral percentages into your paternal and maternal sides.

23andMe also has a DNA Relatives feature that’s similar to Family Finder and it will estimate your Y-DNA and mtDNA haplogroups. So if you want to cover all your bases—then the 23andMe test can be a great value as an African DNA test.

6. Y-DNA and mtDNA Testing at African DNA

Harvard University Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. was a pioneer in African DNA testing. He founded African DNA to encourage more African Americans to get their DNA tested.

The company offers a Y-DNA test of 25 markers and an mtDNA test like the mtDNA Plus test at Family Tree DNA. In fact, Family Tree DNA is affiliated with the company and does their DNA testing.

Now they can also offer the Family Finder test that they renamed Ancestry Finder.

Note that African DNA only offers one paternal line Y-DNA test and one maternal line mtDNA test. They do not offer additional Y-DNA markers, the Full Mitochondrial Sequence (FMS) test, or Deep Clade testing. You need to order those tests directly from Family Tree DNA.

The African DNA web site does have more content specific to African DNA testing than any of the more general DNA testing companies. So I encourage anyone looking for an African DNA test to visit the site and learn all you can.

Uniquely, African DNA does offer some higher priced packages that combine DNA testing with genealogy research to build your family tree.

For most African-Americans there are no genealogical records prior to the 1870 census, when last names of former slaves began to be recorded. If you want someone to build a few generations of your family tree, however, this is an option to consider.

MONEY-SAVING TIP: If you’re not ordering a package with genealogy research, be sure to recheck Family Tree DNA to compare prices before placing an order with African DNA. At the time of this writing, you can order the same Y-DNA and mtDNA tests directly through Family Tree DNA for significantly less money.

7. Y-DNA and mtDNA Testing at African Ancestry

African Ancestry is another company that specifically features African DNA tests. Like the companies above, they check your Y-DNA and mtDNA to determine your paternal and maternal lineages. Since their web site does not provide details of either test, I cannot compare them.

Unlike Family Tree DNA, they do not keep a database of customer results, so you will not receive any matches to people with similar DNA. Since the company does not have an autosomal test like Family Finder and 23andMe, it cannot provide any admixture percentages. You won’t learn anything about ancestors outside your narrow paternal and maternal lines.

I found some interesting data on the web site. Even though this site specifically attracts people of African descent, 35% of the paternal line tests show European ancestry. Much of that non-African DNA was introduced into the family tree during the era of slavery. In addition, 8% of their maternal line samples show non-African haplogroups.

An article in the Wall Street Journal was critical of the African DNA test reports provided by this company. Independent experts say that mitochondrial DNA is not sufficient to nail down an ancestor’s origin to a specific country.

Furthermore, the large migrations of Africans over the last 3,000 years means that the typical black American’s DNA will match Africans living today in several countries. Even the founder of African DNA was quoted in the article that the country-specific reports his company provides are largely a “best guess.”

The testing prices at African DNA are higher than those of the companies listed above. Even if you have your African DNA test done elsewhere, the African Ancestry web site includes some interesting information on African heritage and a list of country-by-country resources in Africa for genealogists.

Other African DNA Tests of Uncertain Quality

DNA Tribes uses autosomal markers representing all your ancestors. But unlike AncestryDNA, Family Finder and 23andMe, which check nearly a million autosomal SNPs, DNA Tribes checks a maximum of 27 STRs.

I won’t try to explain the difference between an STR and a SNP here. But autosomal STRs are what police forces around the world have been collecting from criminals for decades.

The company examined 383,000 STR records and claims to have identified major genetic regions around the world. They compare your DNA with their proprietary database and issue reports on your most closely matched regions.

The company does not share its database or reveal its methods. And independent experts are skeptical when such detailed reports arise from so few markers.

Roots for Real offers Y-DNA, mtDNA, and an autosomal test based on 16 STR markers. They position their autosomal admixture test as an African DNA test. But their database is only about one third the size of the already questionable DNA Tribes test. And all of their tests are overpriced compared to market leaders Family Tree DNA, 23andMe, and Ancestry.com.

 

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