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SNP Assurance on older kits

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  • SNP Assurance on older kits

    In response to my most recent request for SNP Assurance on a project member (an older kit, not a newly tested one), Bennett Greenspan sent this email:
    We created a master database list of over 3000 samples that we want to have tested for SNP assurance, but it really clogged the U of A's ability to pull all those samples. They have already resolved about 600, primarily R1b weird samples and now they are pulled E3a samples. This will take another 3-4 months, but if he's NOT able to join Genographic then he is FOR SURE on the list.

    This tells me several things:

    1) Just as publicly announced, the SNP Assurance Program applies to a customer whose haplogroup prediction is too weak for the Genographic Project, as explained on the Genographic Project tab of the FTDNA page. This is not the same as showing a '-' on a project web site. I have project members who show '-' but do not qualify for SNP Assurance, and conversely I have project members who show a haplogroup prediction on our project web site but who nevertheless are unacceptable to the Genographic Project and hence qualify for SNP Assurance.

    2) Older kits have now been fully screened for SNP Assurance qualification. As a consequence, project administrators need not, and should not, make any further requests for individual SNP Assurance treatment. In fact, at this point and with this knowledge I would now consider it impolite for a project administrator to ask that his members get special treatment over everyone else.

    3) We all need to be patient. Resolving all these older cases will take roughly 4 months.

  • #2
    On the advice of Vince Vizachero, Italy Project administrator, I contacted FTDNA last month to ask that Sicily Project members who were tested before the SNP Assurance program was announced be given backbone tests. Vince told me that FTDNA had approved with a similar request he had made for some Italy Project members.

    I submitted a list of 15 Sicily Project members who were unpredicted as to haplogroup and requested a free backbone test for them. FTDNA approved 11 of them for the backbone test. This included a member who I had kept in an "Unclear" designation. He seemed to be most likely an R1b, but had a very unusual haplotype with only 12 markers. It turns out that he is an R1b and now I know that for sure. There was also a member I had placed in the J2 grouping whom the backbone test showed is actually a J1.

    I'm not sure about the criteria for SNP Assurance program qualification. You state that it has to do with whether there's enough assurance of haplogroup to join the Genographic Project. I know that in my case, I was unpredicted as to haplogroup, because I have several two-step mutations off R1b modal values. Yet when I transferred my results to the Genographic Project in 2005, I had no trouble doing that. My test kit was one of those I asked FTDNA to test, which was approved. I got my result yesterday - P25+, which makes me R1b1 in FTDNA's eyes. This is not news to me, since I had tested S21+ (R1b1c9) over a year ago at Ethnoancestry.

    Mike Maddi
    Sicily Project Co-administrator


    • #3
      Originally posted by MMaddi
      Yet when I transferred my results to the Genographic Project in 2005, I had no trouble doing that. My test kit was one of those I asked FTDNA to test, which was approved.
      Part of the reason for my posting is that the more liberal policy you cite has apparently changed. FTDNA is telling us in so many words that it has combed its database for all cases properly qualifying for SNP Assurance, and that these 3000 cases constitute an enormous backlog that will take 4 months to clear. Given this backlog of properly qualifying cases, I now believe it is impolite for project administrators to ask that their own members be put at the front of the line, or worse, that cases not properly qualifying be given a free test even before the backlog of properly qualifying cases has been cleared.

      Keep in mind that FTDNA was responding to a request from me, for a case that properly qualifies. On previous similar requests, FTDNA would schedule a haplogroup test for the next batch. FTDNA did not do so this time.

      By the way, there is no ambiguity about the qualifying criterion for the SNP Assurance Program:
      In this program, if we cannot predict a personÂ’s Y-DNA haplogroup with sufficient confidence that they can join the National GeographicÂ’s Genographic Project, we will automatically perform a Backbone SNP test in order to identify the haplogroup assignment.

      Anyone who is able to transfer his results to the Genographic Project, anyone who has already transferred his results to the Project, and of course anyone who transferred his results from the Project, does not qualify.

      I don't mean to be a martinet here. I admit that I, too, occasionally requested, and sometimes obtained, a backbone test for a project member who did not strictly qualify. But I agree with FTDNA that at this point, we all need to be patient. Let us remember that FTDNA is running these 3000 tests at great expense to itself but at no charge to us. We need to stop asking for special favors in this matter, at least until the backlog has cleared.
      Last edited by lgmayka; 14 April 2007, 08:22 PM.