Re: Ancestry's Drastic Changes Dash Hopes of Finding Connections #dna


Christine Hill
 

I agree with Phil Karlin's (above) assessment of Ancestry. Its interface is too opaque to be really useful in genetic genealogy. It needs a chromosome browser and to make available (and downloadable) more information about dna matches for it to be really useful, especially for researching distant relatives. As it is now, the results may be indicative of a relationship, but unless you know which chromosome the shared segment is on, and the starting and ending point of the shared segment, then you really won't be able to fully analyse or hypothesise a possible relationship.  I have used Ancestry for years and use it mainly to develop my tree, but I have uploaded the raw data to My Heritage to identify the shared segments with my matches, which I then put into DNA painter. This gives me a visual diagram of shared segments on each chromosome. So for example there is Person A where the DNA of my mother, her brother and myself, share 9 segments between us. Using the segment information from MyHeritage, I can see that all 3 of us share a segment on chromosome 1 with Person A, starting at the same position and ending at the same position, all of which are 12cM each. Also, all 3 of us also share a segment with the same person A on chromosome 12, where the segment of my mother and her brother start at the same position and end at the same position and are 6.5cM for both. Interestingly the same segment starts at a slightly earlier position in my DNA and ends at the same position, and is 7.2 cM. These segments might be too small to be of interest to people investigating close cousins, but to me, comparing family trees and trying to identify distant ancestors like 10gg's, these small shared segments are very significant and extremely unlikely to be occurring by chance. So Ancestry should not be removing matches of 8cM or below, as these may be of significance in certain circumstances when testing families, rather than only individuals. However, I assume that all this data is still in the raw data, so that by uploading to another site like MyHeritage of Gedmatch, you would be able to retrieve the small segment data. It is probably that they are now not showing these small segments on the Ancestry database as matches. So I am pretty sure they would still there in the raw data. It would be surprising if Ancestry had removed them.

Christine Hill

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