Which DNA test should I get?


Q: And how & where do I get it?
I am interested in finding out haplogroups, percentages, and lineages all the biological stuff. Could someone please tell me what kind of DNA test does that and where do i get it?

A: No DNA test will do all that. There are 4 types of DNA, 3 being tested. Bear with me while I explain. You have 2sex chromosomes, a Y and a X. You got the Y from your father and the X from your mother. The X is untraceable at present. You got the Y from your father, his father, his father and so on.
You also have Mitochondrial from your mother.her mother,her mother and so on. It is in the cytoplasm outside the cells. Then there is Autosomal which you got 50-50 from both parents but not necessarily 25% from each of your 4 grandparents. The reason why what you inherited can be biased between grandmother and grandfather on each side of the family. How you inherited any bias will not be how your siblings inherited it. An exception can be for identical twins. There are no Haplogroups with Autosomal. It is more complicated. 44 of your 46 chromosomes are made up of Autosomal DNA.

Y & Mitochondrial have been used for years for people to match themselves with another and if they have a complete match then they know they share a common ancestor and can share information. With each they will assign you to a Haplogroup based on your results and show you the origin of your nomadic ancestors going back thousands of years. But understand it is only in 2 lines. Your family lines double each generation you go back. You get each of those 2, Y & Mitochondrial, from only ONE person in each generation you go back. If you had both test done by the time you got back to your 16 great great grandparents, 14 of them will not be included in either results. So the 2 of them no way represents your total ancestry.

Autosomal is used for overall testing but what companies do that do the analyses is match you with population samples in their database. So the results could vary from company to company as they don’t all have the same database. One might be deficient in some population samples the other on isn’t; In the long run all they can tell you is you are so much European, so much Amerindian(Indigenous), so much N. African etc etc. FamilyTreeDNA will match you with individuals in their database going back 5 generations. DNATribes will show you your top 20 population matches in descending order which includes specific countries. No way does that mean you have ancestors from all those top 20 matches but you match DNA to some degree. You have to understand there is no such thing as national or ethnic purity. The same DNA crosses boundaries. Under further questioning DNATribes told me I was about 7/8 European and 1/8 Amerindian. With both websites if you go under “feedback” at the top there is a way you can email them and ask questions. They are both very prompt at replying. Never, never, never take any DNA test without asking as many questions you have. Too many people have been misled by a lot of the hype they have heard on some of the TV programs. Some will have taken the Y and or Mitochondrial and not understand why like in one case where they are Lebanese/Sicilian their grandfather’s DNA goes back to China. Well who knows how far back that goes. Most Europeans will go back to India, Iran and places like that. Then they will have the Autosomal done and cannot understand why they were not provided with a Haplogroup.

SMGF does Y & Mitochondrial for free. They don’t provide you with an analysis, but at one time they had contract with GeneTree to do the analyses for about $20 which is extremely reasonable. They state they plan to do Autosomal testing in the near future and are building a database for it. If you go under “Contact Us” at the top there is a way you can email them and ask questions. They are also prompt at replying.