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African American DNA Research Forum

Re: Female & Male Line DNA Results

>Toot, You were given admixtures reflecting 87% African and 18%
>European. To your knowledge, do these figures reflect only backwards
>through the mother's mother's mother... and father's, father's
>father... OR every branch of the ENTIRE tree? Forgive me if this
>question was answered already. When the mind has no established 'frame
>of reference' things tend not to stick in the beginning.

My percentages were 82% and 18%. They represent ancestry from BOTH of my parents. I don't know from which what ancestry came. I can only go by what they looked like and say there was some European on both sides, tho I have no oral history of it on my mother's side. She and my father were about the same skin color, but his mother's father was said to 'look white' tho his mother did not. (Three of my grandparents died before my parents reached adulthood. I did not know either of my mother's parents, knew only my father's father. My father did not know his mother because he was less than 2 years old when she died, tho we do have a picture of her.)

A mental picture I got from the documentary "Motherland: A Genetic Journey" - Think of a funnel, with you representing the tip of the funnel. Remember there is one of you; two of your parents; four of your grandparents, etc., etc. so the funnel widens with each generation as the number of direct ancestors doubles each generation. Go back 10 generations and you have 1,024 direct ancestors above you in that funnel.

The test result that gives percentages reflects ALL of the people above you in the funnel.

Still another picture: run your ancestor chart. The top line is your father, his father, his father, etc. That is the lineage that Y-chromosome testing gives you.

The bottom line of your chart is your mother, her mother, her mother, etc. That is the lineage that mtDNA testing gives you.

Neither mtDNA nor Y-chromosome testing from one subject will give you anything on the "inside" lines. You have to use cousins, aunts, uncles, etc., to get the other lines.

I have tested 4 lines, one for each grandparent (using cousins). But each grandparent had two parents, so there are 4 great-grandparents not tested. When I get back 10 generations, I still have results for only 4 of 1,024 ancestors, a small percentage. And none of my tests show European heritage, which the biogeographical results show. That means it comes from some of the "inside" lines which I have not yet tested.

Keep this in mind: The REASON Y-chromosome and mtDNA are used for these tests is BECAUSE they do not mix. It is a direct inheritance from ONE parent, received unchanged (basically) from the Y-chromosome or mtDNA that parent had.

The rest of the DNA we get from our parents gets mixed up such that siblings don't get the same autosomal DNA. That's what make siblings not identical unless they are identical twins, etc.

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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