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  • Testing mother's mtDNA

    (I'm female) I tested my mtDNA, and received my result which is supposed to include my mother and every female in our hereditary line. If I wanted to take a DNA sample from my mother to test her as well (the only portion tested that I know if is the mtDNA) would it be a waste of money?

    Can the X chromosome my Mother inherited from her father be tested for ancestry? Is there any way to separate the X chromosomes and test each for ancestral genetic markers? or is that exclusively in the mtDNA?

  • #2
    mtDNA is an ancestry test. It does not include every female per se.. only every mother of the mother of your mother so to speak.. not father's sister for example.

    Why do you need to test your mother? Maybe what you want instead is the FTDNA Family Finder test.

    The X chromosome of your father can not be tested for ancestry, only tested in a DNA relatedness test such as some siblingship tests. The X is mixed as is all other 22 chromosomes from both parents making your DNA autosomal markers unique to you. For X will get an x1, x2 or x3 result thus you can't say you will have one from your father and if you did would that be from his father, hard to say. Only the y chromosome is never mixed between parents and is passed down father to son.

    If you are looking to test for family ancestry yDNA has to be from your father or full brother.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by mkdexter View Post
      mtDNA is an ancestry test. It does not include every female per se.. only every mother of the mother of your mother so to speak.. not father's sister for example.

      Why do you need to test your mother? Maybe what you want instead is the FTDNA Family Finder test.

      The X chromosome of your father can not be tested for ancestry, only tested in a DNA relatedness test such as some siblingship tests. The X is mixed as is all other 22 chromosomes from both parents making your DNA autosomal markers unique to you. For X will get an x1, x2 or x3 result thus you can't say you will have one from your father and if you did would that be from his father, hard to say. Only the y chromosome is never mixed between parents and is passed down father to son.

      If you are looking to test for family ancestry yDNA has to be from your father or full brother.
      I can test my father's X chromosome for my ancestry that's why I'm testing his mtDNA to find out where his maternal line leads.

      Every female child receives one X chromosome from her father (just not the one with the mitochondrial dna) - the other X comes from the girl's mother.

      My question is if I test my mother's DNA I know it won't give me any different mtDNA result, but will I be able to retrieve any additional ancestry information from testing the X chromosomes for ancestry - possibly to uncover something about her paternal line? Her brother has long passed away and he had no sons to test.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by VelvetVellocet View Post
        My question is if I test my mother's DNA I know it won't give me any different mtDNA result, but will I be able to retrieve any additional ancestry information from testing the X chromosomes for ancestry - possibly to uncover something about her paternal line? Her brother has long passed away and he had no sons to test.
        Not from the mtDNA test. I noticed I have a x chromosome result I can download from FTDNA as raw data but I didn't notice it until after the FF results so I don't know if it was from FF or from mtDNA testing. Probably the FF testing. In either case neither test uses it (currently) in matching to others in their respective databases. The problem is when you go from mother to son to granddaughter to greatgrandson there is no guarantee the father's X chromosome is passing down each time to the male side.
        Last edited by mkdexter; 24 April 2010, 02:10 AM. Reason: add

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        • #5
          To be more technical here the two X chromosomes actually recombine at meisosis (or however that is spelled) so they exchange information and become similar (autosomal does the same) and thus can't distinguish between prior father and mother (grandparents).. As far as I know there is X STR block testing being done which gives the DXS values like YDNA but still its not the same thing as Y since you are dealing with autosomal activity.

          FTDNA offers a siblingship X-STR test that uses these blocks: Panel one tests DXS10011, DXS10066, DXS10067, DXS10068, DXS10069, and DXS10131. Panel two tests DXS10074, DXS10075, DXS10077, DXS10079, DXS10132, DXS6807, DXS7132, DXS7423, DXS8377, DXS981, and HPRTB.

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          • #6
            Hi,

            I am thinking of having my mother test also. I want to know more of the mix from her side of the family. If there is Nat.Amer. there would be a greater chance of it showing in her dna. An autosomal test, such as ancestry painting, would be the way to go. Testing her mtdna won't tell me anything I don't already know from my own mtdna test. This is my understanding, please, correct me if I am mistaken.

            evbdv

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            • #7
              You are correct. There are some labs who use STR for autosomal and some who use SNPs. SNPs compare more information. FTDNA Family Finder uses SNPs but it does not give you a breakdown map. Not yet anyway.

              Darren.. will FF ever do that?

              .

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              • #8
                The only info I have so far is what is posted on our FAQ page: We are currently in the process of developing a percentage of ancestry test or admixture mapping, and should have it available by summer 2010.

                -Darren Marin
                Family Tree DNA

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Darren View Post
                  The only info I have so far is what is posted on our FAQ page: We are currently in the process of developing a percentage of ancestry test or admixture mapping, and should have it available by summer 2010.

                  -Darren Marin
                  Family Tree DNA
                  That's good news.

                  Since ancestry and admixture estimates (biogeographical ancestry, BGA) are based on autosomal testing, will FTDNA's ancestry test be incorporated into Family Finder? Or will it be a separate product?

                  23andMe includes BGA results in their various tools, such as Ancestry Painting and Global Similarity. Right now, with Family Finder's price and the genealogy-oriented customers in FTDNA's database, FTDNA is seriously challenging 23andMe's Relative Finder.

                  The one weakness for FTDNA is that Family Finder doesn't use the results for BGA estimates. So FTDNA will definitely be the place for to test autosomal SNPs if it includes such an ancestry/admixture estimate in Family Finder.

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