Thursday, April 6, 2017

Family Tree DNA MyOrigins

Family Tree DNA has revamped their MyOrigins. At first, I thought it was just in the way they present it. In actuality, it appears they've recalculated their formulas. Previously, Family Tree DNA MyOrigins told me I was 45% Scandinavian, 39% British Isles, 12% Southern Europe and 4% Asia Minor. I understood that to be telling me that my German genetics was actually due to the migration of population between Western Europe, British Isles and Scandinavia, as in the Anglos and the Saxons. The Southern Europe would be due to some Europeans migrated northward out of Italy and Greece through the centuries. Some of the British Isles would be from my Irish ancestry and the Asia Minor was the surprise of my yDNA haplogroup.

Now that they've redone their calculations, it says I'm 64% Western European, which is the Germany/France area, 30% British Isles and 5% Southeast Europe. It also includes what it describes as a trace amount (less than 2%) from Southeast Asia. It also describes trace amounts as "a very small amount of shared DNA in common with the corresponding population. In some cases this minor percentage could be attributed to background noise."

These percentages actually make more sense to me. The 5% Southeast Europe lines up with the 4% Asia Minor and the Southern Europe seems to have been merged in with the Western Europe. As I stated before, I suspected the Southern Europe was just part of the normal population you would expect in Western Europe. I guess it was a more normal part than I expected! The British Isles percentage dropped down closer to what I would expect for my Irish ancestry since as far as I can tell, 25% of my ancestors would have been Irish. Then it appears they've calculated that this population of Western Europe was not part of the Anglo-Saxon migrations or they don't split that out any longer.

Previously it listed my mother's origins as 56% Scandinavian, 34% Southern Europe, 9% British Isles and 1% Eastern Europe. I don't recall all of the ancestry listed for my mother's sister and I didn't jot it down but I do recall that it showed 10% Ashkenazi Jew. I figured the Eastern Europe of my mother's could have been a trace of the Ashkenazi showing for her sister and the Scandinavian, Southern Europe and British Isles as pretty much as I described above regarding the Anglo-Saxon migrations with a slight possibility of one of her great-grandmothers being from the British Isles since I don't know her origins. Now, my aunt shows no Ashkenazi but 7% Southeast Europe, which I could see as being recalculated from Ashkenazi. My mother now shows as being 19% Southeast Europe, which more closely matches her sisters, when she previously didn't match the Ashkenazi Jew at all. The rest of her origins show as 66% Western and Central Europe and 15% British Isles.

Take another look at your MyOrigins on Family Tree DNA. What do you think? Do you think they're more accurate? I tend to believe they are. As more and more people are tested and as the analysis gets better, they should be better at calculating the origins of your DNA. Just always remember that this doesn't mean that this is the exact percentage of origins of your ancestry. That inheritance is completely random and you inherited DNA from a small fraction of her genealogical ancestors.


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