Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Family Tree DNA Announces Program to Facilitate Comparison of Y-chromosome Testing Results From Other Labs

DNA testing can validate or disprove relationships that have been painstakingly constructed using documents and family traditions. It also can suggest relationships previously unknown. To take best advantage of DNA testing results, your results must be compared with the widest possible number of results of other individuals who are potential relatives.

Family Tree DNA (FTDNA) has just announced a new initiative for all those who have tested at other labs to have their Y-chromosome results added to the FTDNA database. As you may know the results of DNA tests for genealogical purposes are essentially meaningless when viewed in isolation. They take on meaning as they are compared with the results of others. The more results with which they can be compared, the more likely matches (or exclusions) can be established.

In the latest issue of Facts & Genes (Volume 9, Issue 3, Summer 2011) released yesterday, FTDNA rolled out the new initiative:

Family Tree DNA announces Third-Party Labs Y-DNA acceptance

We are pleased to inform you about the launch of a new feature "Third Party" uploads. This will allow for the upload of 33 and 46-marker Y-DNA test results from Ancestry, GeneTree or Sorensen's SMGF. This was a natural development since the necessary tools were created to import the DNA Heritage database after they ceased operations. While the DNA Heritage transfer is free of charge as a result of that acquisition, we will be charging a nominal fee of $19/person to import third party results into Family Tree DNA.

For an additional $39, customers who transfer their third party results will also have the option of testing with Family Tree DNA so that they can receive genetic matches, ancestral origins, and other features that Family Tree DNA customers receive.

Why transfer to Family Tree DNA?

    Family Tree DNA is the world leader in DNA testing for genealogy. As of August 23, 2011, the Family Tree DNA database has 212,000 Y-DNA records including over 104,000 distinct surnames. Comparing your results against the world’s largest database gives you the greatest chance of finding relevant matches and provides more refined information about your results.
    Over 90% of genealogists choose to test with Family Tree DNA, creating the largest community of active genealogists in the industry.
    Transferring will allow you to join projects, communicate with experts, and network with people who share your interests and your heritage. 

What do you get when you transfer third party results?

    The $19 fee will provide customers with an FTDNA personal page which will allow them to join FTDNA projects. This means results will be available to the administrator and included on the project’s public page for comparison with other project members.
    The $58 fee ($19 transfer plus $39 for testing additional markers to make results compatible for matching) will include the same features provided to FTDNA customers:
    Matches: Genetic cousins who share the same paternal line. You will have full access to your matches’ names and e-mail addresses and any genealogical information they have provided. You can immediately begin networking and exchanging information freely.
    Ancestral Origins: Your matches’ paternal origins, listed by country, provide clues about your own recent geographic and ethnic ancestry.
    Haplogroup: The deep ancestral origin your direct paternal line defined by your specific genetic signature.
    Migration Map & Frequency Map: Interactive maps detail the ancient migrations of your paternal ancestors and the distribution of your haplogroup from more recent times.
    Y-DNA Certificate: A printable certificate which includes your name and marker (STR) values.
    Unlimited Updates: As our database grows, you will receive notifications about new matches we find for you. There are no subscription fees for this service.

If you have Y-chromosome results from a lab other than FTDNA, this is an offer you should consider. 

Dr D is an unpaid volunteer coordinator of two surname DNA projects at FTDNA.

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