Ignore Ethnic Results Below the Continental Level

Update January 25, 2018: Adding Insitome Regional Ancestry DNA ethnicity results to this list as #14. Also posting the results as a separate blog post with links to this blog post and my original post about Insitome. Also, added Ancestry results from DNAPassport by HumanCode and will add a blog post about DNAPassport.

Update: I added GenCove to the list as #12 because they recently updated my 23andMe v3 chip transfer ethnicity results. I also added GenePlaza #13.

I don’t recommend any company or admixture test for determining your ethnic results below the continental level. See my link to various Judy G. Russell blog posts (links to her posts can be found as you scroll through that blog post) about why you shouldn’t put a lot of effort on admixture results below the continental level. However, too many people want to know so this is the first of what will most likely be yearly posts about why not to trust ethnic results.

As the New Year winds deeper into Week 2, I thought I would start a yearly rant on ethnic results below the continental level. I am taking a page out of several other genealogy bloggers’ handbooks by doing this. I have included several (eleven results from different companies I have tested with or have transferred results to).

I will start with one of my pet peeves. You are NOT 50% of your parents’ ethnic results. No doubt some will come close to being around 50% of one or more ethnic results, but it is irresponsible for any genetic genealogist or other expert to indicate or support estimating your parents’ ethnic results based on doubling your ethnic results. In my case, my parents are both deceased which makes testing them out of the question. Next, if you go to this blog post https://lostrussianfamily.wordpress.com/2014/09/13/three-siblings-go-on-a-dna-test-journey/ – compare the blogger’s mother, uncle, and aunt’s ethnic results. If we are supposed to go with the theory some experts support that our ethnic results are half of our parents, it would depend on which relative you used in this example to estimate the blogger’s grandparents ethnicity.

The general consensus among genetic genealogy bloggers and experts is sizeable continental level ethnic results – African, Native American, European, Australian Aboriginal, Antarctic (for those with penguin or similar DNA, and I’m joking in case it wasn’t evident)  is usually considered accurate. Exactly how large a percentage falls in the category of sizeable is subjective and depends on each expert’s personal preference. For me, sizeable is more than 10%. I am not saying below 10% is always questionable especially if there is other DNA evidence supporting a low percentage, but it can reach a point where it becomes questionable. For other supporting DNA evidence would include other family members with a fair amount of the same ethnicity, deep enough mtDNA or Y-DNA testing showing haplogroup of a specific ethnicity, specific markers that have only been found in one ethnicity or location, etc.  Some experts might put the limit in the less than 1% range, the 1 – 3% range, 3 – 5% range, or elsewhere. Others may say any continental range, including 0.1%, is valid.

Some problems with any range is the lack of full DNA testing to determine ethnic results. I watched a video where mtDNA was able to pinpoint a male’s matrilineal line to a specific island country because some of the mtDNA markers have only been found on this island. This is in contrast to autosomal DNA which is the normal metric for determining ethnic results. To a similar degree, a deep enough Y-DNA test may narrow down a general location for a patrilineal line. The advent of deep Y-DNA tests, like full DNA testing, or Big-Y at FTDNA and Comprehensive Elite at FGC will help as more males take these tests.

Here are my ethnic results from numerous companies (WeGene has two samples – one from Ancestry DNA and the other from 23andMe, v3 chip). These results don’t include the various admixture ethnic results from GEDmatch which would easily exceed as many results as I included below since there are so many admixture tests on GEDmatch.  I made a similar post about GEDmatch admixture results using my 23andMe (v3 chip) test as a baseline for all of the GEDmatch admixture tests.

#1 (FTDNA):

African 0%
New World 0%
Central/South Asian 0%
East Asian 0%
Middle Eastern 0%
European 97%
Jewish Diaspora 0%

#2 (National Geographic Geno 2.0, ran by FTDNA):
Northern European 42%
Mediterranean 38%
Southwest Asian 16%
Neanderthal 2.5%
Denisovan 3.7%

#3 (23andMe, v3 chip):
European 99.1%
Northwestern European 94.1%
British & Irish 39.4%
French & German 22.9%
Scandinavian 4.3%
Finnish 0.0%
Broadly Northwestern European 27.5%
Southern European 3.2%
Balkan 0.4%
Sardinian 0.0%
Italian 0.0%
Iberian 0.0%
Broadly Southern European 2.9%
Ashkenazi Jewish 0.1%*
Eastern European 0.0%
Broadly European 1.7%
South Asian 0.0%
Broadly South Asian 0.0%
East Asian & Native American 0.9%
Native American 0.8%
East Asian < 0.1%
Yakut < 0.1%
*Y-DNA indicates Jewish line of priests (Cohen Match)

#4 (Ancestry DNA)
Ethnicity Estimate
Europe West 31%
Scandinavia 26%
Great Britain 15%
Iberian Peninsula 13%
Ireland/Scotland/Wales 10%
Europe South 3%
Europe East < 1%
Caucasus < 1%

#5 AncestrybyDNA (different company than Ancestry):
European: 100%

#6 (DNATribes – broken down several ways)
Continental Core:
Basque: 72.2%
Dravidian South India 18.8%
Mesoamerican 6.3%
Aka-Mbuti-Hadza 2.8%
SouthChina 0.0%
Regional Cluster:
NW Europe 30.9%
Spanish-Portuguese 15.1%
Balto-Slavic 12.6%
Finnish 11.2%
Central European 10.5%
Basque 6.6%
Aegean-Balkan-Italian 4.8%
Mari-Chuvash 4.2%
Azeri-Kurdish-Persian-Turkey 2.5%
Tatar=Chuvash 0.8%
Kannaid-Kurumba South India 0.7%
Aka-Mbuti-Hadza 0.1%
Mesoamerican 0.0%
Population (Native Population Only):
Cornwall West Britain 28.0%
Finland 20.0%
Sweden 16.3%
Spain Sample 2 12.9%
Orkney Islands Scotland 10.7%
Basque Spain 8.2%
Maris 4.0%
Population (Native and Diasporic Populations):
Cornwall West Britain 28.0%
Finland 20.0%
Sweden 16.3%
Spain Sample 2 12.9%
Orkney Islands Scotland 10.7%
Basque Spain 8.2%
Maris 4.0%

#7 (Genes For Good)
European 99%

#8 DNA.Land
Northcentral European 77%
Southwestern European 11%
– Southwestern European 9.6%
– Ambiguous 1.9%
Northeast European 8.3%
– North Slavic 4.9%
– Finnihs 3.4%
Balkan 3.5%

#9 WeGene (1 of 2):
European 99.96%
French 60.63%
Finnish/Russian 19.95%
Balkan 13.37%
English 5.99%
Others 0.01%
Others 0.04%

#10 WeGene (2 of 2 – don’t remember which is which, but one was Ancestry transfer and the other was 23andMe)

European 99.96%
French 56.98%
Finnish/Russian 25.39%
Balkan 11.41%
English 6.16%
Others 0.01%
Others 0.04%


#11 MyHeritage (transfer of 23andMe v3 results – after latest update to Ethnicity January 2018 – thought I had an earlier version of MyHeritage results and probably do somewhere):

Europe 100.0%
North and West  88.6%
North and West European 49.3%
English 27.5%
Irish, Scottish, and Welsh 11.8%
South Europe 6.1%
Iberian 6.1%
East Europe 5.3%
Balkan 5.3%
Total: 100.0%
(Any below this point were added after the post was originally added).

#12 Gencove
Northern and Central European 61%
Scandinavia 12%
Southwestern Europe 10%
Northern Italy 7%
Northeast Europe 6%

#13 GenePlaza
West Eurasian 98.5%
Northwest European 76.5%
Southwestern European 11.4%
North Slavic 8.6%
Ambiguous 2.0%
Ambiguous1.5%

#14 Insitome Regional Ancestry

Europe 100%
Western European 60%
East European 23%
Basque 16%
Finnish 1%
Ashkenazi 0%
North Mediterranean 0%
Sardinian 0%

Other Regions:

Africa 0%

Bantu 0%
Central African 0%
Khoisan 0%
Nilotic 0%
West African 0%

America 0%

Amazonian 0%
Central South American 0%
North American 0%

Asia 0%

Austronesian 0%
Central Asian 0%
Northeast Asian 0%
Siberia 0%
South Asian 0%
Southeast Asian 0%

Middle East, North Africa 0%

Arabian 0%
Caucasus 0%
Levantine 0%
Northwest African 0%

Oceania 0%
No breakdown below Oceania

 


#15 DNAPassport (by HumanCode using Helix to process the DNA – from a screenshot, will update once I get to see the results in person):

Ancestry:
North/West Europe 46% (Northern and Western European)
North Europe 33% (British, Irish, Finnish)
Undetermined 12%
South/West Europe 9% (Iberian and Spanish)

 

Ancestry:
North/West Europe 46% (Northern and Western European)
North Europe 33% (British, Irish, Finnish)
Undetermined 12%
South/West Europe 9% (Iberian and Spanish)

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This entry was posted in 23andMe, AncestryByDNA, AncestryDNA, Autosomal DNA, DNA, DNA.Land, FamilyTree DNA, FTDNA, GEDmatch, LivingDNA, mtDNA, MyHeritage DNA, WeGene. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Ignore Ethnic Results Below the Continental Level

  1. Pingback: Insitome Regional Ancestry DNA Results | UpsDownsFamilyHistory.com V2.0

  2. Pingback: DNA Passport Results | UpsDownsFamilyHistory.com V2.0

  3. Pingback: Major 23andMe Ethnicity Improvement Coming Soon | Ups and Downs of Family History V2.0

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