Re: Finding whether 2 men are related #dna


Hanna Grossman wrote:

"Someone has turned up sharing my (relatively unusual) maiden name,
but >from whose family going back 5 generations no tie has been
established. Would comparing his Y DNA with that of my brother be
able to say whether they are related? More than that they are both
German Jews? How many comparison points would be needed? Which
company is most appropriate to use for this? What else would I
need to know to get this going?"

Yes, a Y-DNA test would be perfect for testing whether your brother
and the other person, who share the same surname, are related through
their paternal line of ancestors. I did exactly the same thing a few
years ago and found to my disappointment that another person with the
same surname was not related to me - he had an entirely different
haplogroup which means that we didn't share a common direct male line
ancestor going back several thousand years at least.

I took the test at Family Tree DNA, which lets you test 12, 25, 37, or
67 Y-DNA markers. For your purpose, if that's all you want to know, a
12 or 25 marker test should be sufficient. You can expect to get
either a perfect or almost perfect match if there is a family
relationship, or most likely no match at all if you aren't related. I
began with a 37 marker test and later upgraded to 67 because once I
knew something and could identify some potential matches I was greatly
tempted to learn more.

Rather than the Y-DNA test, you can take an autosomal DNA test (Family
Finder) yourself and compare it to the other person. The results will
probably be much more ambiguous. It's something that would be done if
the only people who can be tested do not share potential male ancestors.
In your case the Y-DNA test is much more powerful.

Elan Caspi
El Cerrito, CA

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