Re: Using DNA matches to find Jewish ancestors #dna


Jesse Springer
 

"Keep in mind that all admixture reports from all companies are still at the level of "for entertainment value only" -- and MyHeritage is the absolute clown of the bunch. They predict ancestry that is ridiculously false for basically everyone. (For me, it's Swedish; for my cousin, it's British Isles. Both of us actually have all of our ancestors squarely in the Carpathian Basin.)

Ashkenazi genetics is endogamous enough that it's pretty confidently identifiable, even by MyHeritage, but the percentages they report can be wildly different from other companies. When it comes to something like "West Asian", all bets are off: neither the reference populations nor the customer base have even remotely enough representatives from this area to come to any definitive conclusions.

What it comes down to is that despite what all the DNA companies would have you believe, geography is not genetic.

Julia"

Julia, thanks for your input! That's very  insightful. As far as confidence in the Ashkenazi DNA goes, it might help to know that my brother took an AncestryDNA test and it reported an estimated 16% Ashkenazi, while my two sisters took 23andMe and it reported 16% Ashkenazi for one sister, and 8% for the other. I'm not sure how accurate the percentages go, but that many people in my family all getting similar Ashkenazi results does seem to indicate there was an Ashkenazi ancestor. 

I took a MyHeritage test and my Ashkenazi estimate was 6.6%. It also reported an estimated 9% North African & 2.9% West Asian.... 

When I filter DNA matches to show people in the database whose results include "North African," one of the closest matches based on segment length is a man named Avi Cohen, and there is another with a name written in Hebrew. These are the same individuals that are matched to my father's account when using the "West Asian" filter, so I chalked up my "North African" to be the same as the "West Asian" category that they estimated in my father's report. And since the names of the DNA segment matches are Avi Cohen and another in Hebrew, we assume it's from a common Jewish ancestor. 

Anyways... you're right, though. These tests are not always accurate so it's hard to conclude anything with certainty.  

On Tue, Jul 28, 2020, 11:53 AM JPmiaou via groups.jewishgen.org <JPmiaou=yahoo.com@...> wrote:
Keep in mind that all admixture reports from all companies are still at the level of "for entertainment value only" -- and MyHeritage is the absolute clown of the bunch. They predict ancestry that is ridiculously false for basically everyone. (For me, it's Swedish; for my cousin, it's British Isles. Both of us actually have all of our ancestors squarely in the Carpathian Basin.)

Ashkenazi genetics is endogamous enough that it's pretty confidently identifiable, even by MyHeritage, but the percentages they report can be wildly different from other companies. When it comes to something like "West Asian", all bets are off: neither the reference populations nor the customer base have even remotely enough representatives from this area to come to any definitive conclusions.

What it comes down to is that despite what all the DNA companies would have you believe, geography is not genetic.

Julia
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