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Thread: Y Chromosome and mtDNA Testing?

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    Y Chromosome and mtDNA Testing?

    I am entertaining the concept of having a DNA analysis performed, having read several times on Skadi of people alluding to tests they had had done. something like the www.familytreedna.com comprehensive test I guess. I was wondering if there is any consensus on exactly what tests one should have done? (which tests are meaningful, and not a waste of money) Are there others beside Y-chromosome and MtDNA? and which company is the most accepted and professional in the field (ie, who produces acceptable results?)

    I don't know, just any advice on how I might go about this would be appreciated.

    Regards,
    Anders

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    Y-chromosome and mitochondrium tests are interesting, but not reliable when it comes to determining your racial affiliations. The Y-chromosome is passed on through the paternal line, so yours equals that of your father, and your grandfather, and your greatgrandfather, etc. In theory, you could have a rather negroid Y-chromosome yet be fully Caucasoid in phenotype and autosomal DNA. It's the same thing with the mitochondrium, with the exception that it's passed on through the maternal line.

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    These have been, however, tremendously useful in the genetic study of migration, as we've discussed earlier. Very cool stuff.

    Quote Originally Posted by Siegfried
    Y-chromosome and mitochondrium tests are interesting, but not reliable when it comes to determining your racial affiliations. The Y-chromosome is passed on through the paternal line, so yours equals that of your father, and your grandfather, and your greatgrandfather, etc. In theory, you could have a rather negroid Y-chromosome yet be fully Caucasoid in phenotype and autosomal DNA. It's the same thing with the mitochondrium, with the exception that it's passed on through the maternal line.
    I refuse to submit
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    Quote Originally Posted by EngelDesKrieges
    These have been, however, tremendously useful in the genetic study of migration, as we've discussed earlier. Very cool stuff.
    Originally Posted by Siegfried
    Y-chromosome and mitochondrium tests are interesting, but not reliable when it comes to determining your racial affiliations. The Y-chromosome is passed on through the paternal line, so yours equals that of your father, and your grandfather, and your greatgrandfather, etc. In theory, you could have a rather negroid Y-chromosome yet be fully Caucasoid in phenotype and autosomal DNA. It's the same thing with the mitochondrium, with the exception that it's passed on through the maternal line.
    I haven't been able to understand the sometimes common sense defying contradictions these test results allegedly give. Results implying strong ethnic relations between obviously differing peoples etc. Are people misusing this information in debates? Does DNA test information "lend" itself to being misapplied at this stage in its development (or given our incomplete understanding of it?)

    I've read contradictory studies, for instance, that show the English are markedly different from the Welsh & Irish etc, and yet another study that claims to have established the English don't exist, or are identical genetically to the rest of Britain. I just don't get it!

    I hope you can indulge my blunt questions, I still have only my toes in the Anthropological swimming pool.

    Regards,
    Anders.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anders Lang
    I haven't been able to understand the sometimes common sense defying contradictions these test results allegedly give. Results implying strong ethnic relations between obviously differing peoples etc. Are people misusing this information in debates? Does DNA test information "lend" itself to being misapplied at this stage in its development (or given our incomplete understanding of it?)
    Certainly. The PBS once aired a show which was supposed to prove race didn't exist. They used DNA from the mitochondrium to mislead the audience into believing a Euro-American kid was genetically almost the same as an Afro-American kid, and very different from another Euro-American. On the individual level, such tests are highly unreliable for the reasons mentioned above.

    I've read contradictory studies, for instance, that show the English are markedly different from the Welsh & Irish etc, and yet another study that claims to have established the English don't exist, or are identical genetically to the rest of Britain. I just don't get it!
    The English have more continental Germanic ancestry than other ethnic groups in Britain. The Welsh and Irish are indeed quite different in their ancestry from the English. The Welsh also tend to be quite a bit darker and more Mediterranean-looking. However, since the English also carry autochthonous British strains and have intermarried with the other groups, genetic similarities do pop up. The different results you mentioned are probably due to different genetic markers being used.

    I hope you can indulge my blunt questions, I still have only my toes in the Anthropological swimming pool.
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    They're basically all a waste of money.

    The sample sizes in the databases of these companies are often appalingly low.

    Y-chromosome and mtDNA tests only tell you what lineage ONE of your ancestors belonged to. It is likely that it will turn out to be Negroid or Mongoloid. And since they constitute non-coding regions of DNA, they basically don't have much meaning in the first place.

    Autosomal DNA tests aren't advanced and differentiated enough yet.

    An excellent post on AncestryByDNA with which I agree wholeheartedly:
    http://forum.skadi.net/showpost.php?...&postcount=231

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