Thursday, January 9, 2014

Comparison of BritainsDNA and Gen2.0 results

Gen2.0 results have now arrived for my family line (testing my brother) and I have been busy comparing them with BritainsDNA results. The best comparison is between the Reference Populations in Gen2.0 and the Population Percentage Plots of BritainsDNA.

Gen2.0 also finds our autosomal ancestry to be British and German and I think they are weighted equally by them but that is just my take on that. We ended up being 43% Northern European, 39% Mediterranean and 17% southwest Asian as our overall test result. In general British (Gen 2.0) is considered to be 49% Northern European, 33% Mediterranean and 17% southwest Asian as their control group and the German control is 46% Northern European, 36% Mediterranaean and 17% southwest Asian.

At BritainsDNA the drilling down into our ancestry has been broken down further to give us 11% Finnish, 7% Ashkenazi Jewish, 8% Anatolian-Caucasian, 5% Steppe Turkic, 14% Balto-Slavic, 35% Northwestern European, 10% Mediterranean and 10% Basque-Iberian.

Gen2.0 mentions that the autosomal results are looking back six generations (i.e. our three times great grandparents) but also included (of course) our ancient ancestry. Again it causes me to look at Christopher Buller in London the only 3x great grandparent (other than my mitochondrial line which does appear to be solidly Scotland/Ireland) about whom I have no knowledge in terms of his parents. Could one 4x great grandparent tip the scales from 49% to 43% thus making our autosomal results more German than British? I rather think that starting to think about Christopher's parent/grandparents on his maternal line as being German is not a bad hypothesis and one that I shall explore more fully. A 4x great grandparent would contribute 1/64 of our ancestry in purely mathematical terms but depending on the chromosome portion that is inherited the impact can be greater or less.

I think that the BritainsDNA is looking at a much deeper ancestry with their Population Percentage Plots than Gen 2.0. But Gen2.0 does provide a glimpse into the very deep past giving 1.9% Neanderthal (usual is around 2% for Europeans) and 3.5% for Denisovans and the average there is 3 to 5% for Europeans although the mention is made that this result is very experimental and in its early stages and could change. Certainly the Mediterranean at 39% is clearly observable in the BritainsDNA results with 7% Ashkenazi Jewish, 10% Mediterranean, 10% Basque-Iberian and 14% Balto-Slavic. The southwestern Asian 17% clearly visible in the 8% Anatolian-Caucasian, 5% Steppe Turkic although somewhat lower (4%). The 35% Northwest European and 11% Finnish do come up higher than the 43% Northern European (46%) found in Gen2.0. But the overall picture is very similar and each presents in a different way that ends up adding to the deep history of our family lines. I am most content to have done both.

Continuing with the comparison the mitochondrial haplogroup found by BritainsDNA and Gen2.0 are exactly alike. Since I have already tested my own Full Genetic Scan of the Mitochondria at FT DNA I did already know this result. Gen 2.0 does provide the raw scan of the y SNPS, the mt dna and the autosomal results. I have uploaded all of this information to FT DNA but suspect it will take a few days before I can see those results in my brother's project. The raw data for the y SNPS at BritainsDNA is also provided. I have forwarded both sets of the y data to Ken Nordtvedt as he is the expert in I haplogroup and I would like to see these results benefit the overall tree for I2a1b2 (ISOGG) or I2a2b (FT DNA). I have also upgraded the markers for my brother to 111 to give the greatest opportunity to learn more. I shall have to save my nickles to do a Full genetic scan of the Y so that will be awhile!

The total data points returned for mtDNA at Gen 2.0 were 44 and at BritainsDNA there were ten data points given which precisely put us into the H11a2a1 grouping.

The total data points returned for yDNA SNPS at Gen 2.0 were 12,051 and from BritainsDNA there were 14,290.

The autosomal data examined at BritainsDNA was around 300,000 points and at Gen2.0 the autosomal data points examined numbered 130,109. This itself could account for the differences between these results. The greater the number of points the greater the depth of a study. But overall they gave the same picture which is of great value in how I proceed looking at my Buller family of Bermondsey/Surrey. I did find a Buller family at St Olave in the late 1700s and I think that my focus will be to discover where this family lived before they were at Bermondsey. I do not see any relationship between Christopher and this Buller family except they are in the same place at the same time. But travelling back on similar lines can sometimes prove to be most rewarding.

My overall conclusion on the testing that has been done on our lines at BritainsDNA and National Geographic Genographic Gen 2.0 is that both are very valuable in terms of deep ancestry and learning more about your family from the emergence of Homo sapiens to the present time. Who would have thought fifty years ago that we could have such an indepth study of our ancestry through our genes in this new century. Would I place one above the other? Probably not if anyone asked me for my opinion. Each one has given me a different picture of my ancestry through time.

Next step is to test my line at BritainsDNA to compare it with my brother. What valuable information to pass on to one's descendants both collateral and direct can be gleaned from advanced DNA testing. I do not think that I could have ever become this interested in genealogy without having DNA testing. I began my genealogical studies with the advent of DNA testing and the push of my cousin George DeKay who needed me to write a profile of my Pincombe family in Westminster Township, Middlesex County, Ontario in the early settlers book published in 2006. I did do the profile and could add greatly to that now as time has passed but what is in the profile is quite accurate for this Devonshire family who left their home in 1850 and traveled to Canada via the Port of New York and his brother in Genessee New York to southern Ontario.

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