DNA Group Update – Nov. 2013

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Genetic genealogy is an ever changing field. Yesterday’s news from the Family Tree DNA conference is an example of that, but interesting articles and updates to DNA genealogy testing services (and prices) appear regularly.

A few of the more recent articles and links –

First, the biggest news from FamilyTree DNA‘s conference this weekend is the new Y-DNA test available – the ‘Big Y DNA’ test – a full Y sequence test, replacing ‘Walk Through the Y’ testing. This will begin at $695, but previous customers are being offered a reduced price through November. Have a look at Debbie Kennett’s compilation of news about this which was posted yesterday and has links to other articles, and check the FamilyTreeDNA website which should make details public soon. ( If you are a male FamilyTreeDNA customer already, sign in and you may see more now.) If you are on Facebook, check out FamilyTree DNA’s Facebook page.

And, in case anyone thinks DNA testing for genealogy is brand new, FamilyTree DNA announced 10 year DNA Pioneer awards at the conference. More on that at Roberta Estes blog, DNAeXplained. Roberta is one of those Pioneers: http://dna-explained.com/2013/11/10/10-year-pioneers-recognized-by-family-tree-dna/

For anyone wanting to know more about autosomal DNA testing, here are links to a series of 2 recent archived podcasts with CeCe Moore and Shannon Christmas.These are archived from the ‘Research at the National Archives & Beyond’show with Bernice Bennett on BlogTalkRadio.

For those following  the identification of Richard III in England, there is an article in the most recent issue of the Society of Genealogists’ journal, Genealogists’ Magazine,  “Medieval DNA In Action: Richard III And The Family of Anne Spooner” by John Ashdown-Hill. Since there is a Canadian connection, this will be of interest to many here. Read this journal at the BCGS Walter Draycott Library [942 GM V31 #3 Sep/13, pages 91-97].

The UK Personal Genome Project  is underway.  Read more about this project and its implications in this BBC article, “Massive DNA volunteer hunt begins” by James Gallagher, posted 6 November, 2013: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-24834375

Hoping to find your Irish ancestors and family connections with DNA? See the on-line articles and videos from last month’s Genetic Genealogy Ireland conference in Dublin.

The National Geographic’s Genographic Project has dropped the price for its ancient DNA Geno 2.0 testing for a limited time to $159.95: https://genographic.nationalgeographic.com/

DNA News Update posted by M. Diane Rogers, British Columbia Genealogical Society DNA Group facilitator. Comments and news on genetic genealogy and DNA happenings are  welcome here. Watch for information soon on upcoming BCGS DNA Group meetings for 2014.

DNA Research – Genographic Project Chat – Sept. 13, 2013

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Watch a live chat about the National Geographic Project with Dr. Spencer Wells here, Friday, 13 Sept. 2013 – 9 am in most of BC – 9 am PDT.

National Geographic is offering anyone interested in ancient genetics a chance to ask questions directly to The Genographic Project and its leader, Dr. Spencer Wells, in a live Twitter chat on September 13 at 12pm ET.

Dr. Wells will be tweeting from his own twitter handle @spwells and participants may ask questions using the hashtag #NatGeoLive

For those not on Twitter, BCGS will show the chat feed here at BCGS.ca on the right side of the BCGS home page.  For more information about the chat and the National Genographic, see the National Geographic website.

DNA Group News – August 2013

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Roberta Estes has written a 4 part DNA series for the National Genealogical Society, “DNA Testing For Genealogy 101 – What Can It Do For You?”. She’s now added links to each of her articles at her blog, DNAeXplained – Genetic Genealogy, along with a list of the topics covered – from the basics for Y-DNA and mitochondrial and autosomal DNA testing to looking at results.

And for those interested in the United Kingdom’s newest royal, “Y-DNA of the British Monarchy”,  is a new article in the free on-line genetic genealogy journal, Surname DNA Journal.

BCGS DNA Group discussion – April 2013

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Here is a .pdf copy of last night’s DNA group meeting handout.  BCGS DNA handout – April 2013  If you would like this in another format, please just e-mail: webmaster@bcgs.ca

For a follow up on possible benefits of autosomal testing, see Judy Russell’s March 31, 2013 article at her website, The Legal Genealogist, Another matchmaker match!  Judy Russell will be giving the APG DNA April 30th, 2013 webinar mentioned last night. See last night’s handout for more about that.

And if you are interested in ‘personal genomes’, there is a recent textbook, Exploring Personal Genomics by Joel Dudley and Konrad Karczewski that may be of interest. Here’s a link to a review of it.

“Bioinformaticians Share Their Own DNA in Personal Genomics Textbook” by Crystal Gammon, March 25, 2013 at the New York Genome Center website.

DNA News Today

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Genetic DNA testing news -

First, 23andMe.com has dropped the price of their testing significantly in a bid to increase their customer base. This will be very good for those interested in genealogy testing, first, because of the lower cost, and second, because it will attract more people to genetic genealogy. CeCeMoore at Your Genetic Genealogist has written more about this today, and she also has an article on 23andMe’s new ‘Ancestry Painting’, now called ‘Ancestry Composition’, too.

Second, if you participated in the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundations’s (SMGF) testing, time is running out to download your results from Genetree, the associated company. Roberta Estes has the text of the Genetree notice on her website, DNAeXplained – Genetic Genealogy. There was additional information about SMGF in an earlier BCGS DNA Group News article here from July 2012.

DNA Group Meeting Notes – Nov 24, 2012

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A good meeting yesterday! Thanks everyone for attending. Here are the promised links and notes on a few things we covered.

Follow this link for a copy of the BCGS – Genetic Genealogy Handout (from April 2012).  This link is also posted on the BCGS Education Handouts page. One thing has changed – the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation sold its databases and testing company to Ancestry.com. For information about Sorenson (especially important if you contributed DNA to the Sorenson databases), see this previous DNA Group News article. And Ancestry.com is now offering new DNA genealogy testing, but not yet in Canada.

The DNA testing companies we talked about included:

FamilyTree DNA – tests on sale till 31 December 2012: http://www.familytreedna.com

23andMe – for health and genealogy DNA testing: https://www.23andme.com

National Geographic – new Gene 2.0 testing for deep ancestry:  https://genographic.nationalgeographic.com/

The ‘Smith and Jones’ article I recommended reading is at Roberta Estes’ blog, DNAeXplained.

and Genome BC  has a good Education section which may be of interest: http://www.genomebc.ca/education/education-overview/

For those interested particularly in British Isles and Ireland DNA research, here are some links to projects and sites discussed.

The new book, Britain Begins by Barry Cunliffe (October 2012) is worth a read. Here is one review by Francis Pryor at In the Long Run.

People of the British Isles Project: http://www.peopleofthebritishisles.org

Irish DNA Atlas Project: http://www.familyhistory.ie/index.php/en/component/content/category/90-irish-dna-atlas-project

Scotland’s DNA, University of Edinburgh: http://www.orcades.ed.ac.uk/news.html

And Tyrone Bowes’s 3 websites:  English Origenes: http://www.englishorigenes.com , Scottish Origenes: http://www.scottishorigenes.com and Irish Origenes: http://www.irishorigenes.com

And lastly, here is a website link to Anna Hepburn, the actor who recently performed her play ‘Mary Queen of Scots: The Last Letter’ for Simon Fraser University’s Scottish Studies Department: http://www.annahepburn.com  (A great performance – if you’re interested in Scottish history, and you get a chance to see this play, do go – even if you’re not sure you’re related.)

M. Diane Rogers, BCGS DNA Group Facilitator