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Should I do the MtDNA test

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  • KATM
    replied
    Larry, it depends upon what you want to find out. Some people test mtDNA to find matches, others to find out more about the ancient origins of their haplogroup. Unlike 23andme, if you test mtDNA at FTDNA, you will get lists of matches.

    mtDNA testing is best used to solve a genealogical problem, such as trying to prove two women were related by testing their direct maternal line descendants. An example I usually give is shown in the video "DNA Stories: A Tale of Two Sisters featuring Bill Hurst."

    As Jack mentioned, it is not generally the case to find matches with mtDNA testing, as easily as it is with autosomal testing, but it does happen. That is regarded as "fishing" for matches, by reviewing our match lists to see if we find relevant cousins or other relatives, as we do with our Family Finder (or other companies' autosomal tests).

    If you test your mtDNA at FTDNA:
    1. you will get a list of matches of people with the same haplogroup and mutations.
    2. The mtFullSequence test will test the HVR1, HVR2 and Coding Regions, which is the complete mitochondria. The mtDNA Plus test will test the HVR1 and HVR2 regions, but NOT the Coding Region. Matches in the lists at the HVR1 and HVR2 levels are usually very distantly related; see the chart on the "Maternal Lineage Tests" page in the FTDNA Learning Center.
    3. In my opinion, IF you decide to do further testing of your mtDNA, go for the Full Sequence test. With the Full Sequence test, you will be sure that you are getting your full haplogroup, which in your case could be much further down the H haplogroup tree, under H1 (which is a major branch of H). In other words, you may get something like H1a3a4, H1e1a8, H1bz, or many, many others (just for examples). 23andme does not test the full mitochondria, just specific markers to give a good ballpark haplogroup. Sometimes it is right on the button.
    One place you can look up information for subclades is at Eupedia; they have a page for mtDNA haplogroup H. The mtDNA H haplogroup is said to be the most common in Europe.

    Roberta Estes has a blog post, "Mother's Day, Mitochondrial DNA and New Series," that is worth reading, as are her other posts on mtDNA testing.

    If more people tested mtDNA, as much as they do autosomal testing, the mtDNA matching would likely be much more productive. It would also help if more people submitted their mtDNA data to GenBank, to further scientific research in the distribution of mtDNA haplogroups. This will help to improve the mtDNA phylotree.

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  • LarryBurford
    replied
    Thanks for your input Jack.

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  • georgian1950
    replied
    That's pretty far back. I haven't seen that many cases of where the FTDNA FMS has actually found more distant matrilineal ancestors. I think it is a good test to take if you won't miss the funds, but I would look at it as more contributing to research in general than increasing the likelihood that you will extend your own line.

    My opinion only. Others may vary.

    Jack

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  • LarryBurford
    replied
    Originally posted by georgian1950 View Post
    How far back are you confident with your matrilineal line already? How much further do you want to go?
    This is my oldest known ancestor in my maternal line. I already know I am H1 and have the history on that designation. I am not sure what the FTDNA test would tell me. Elizabeth DeLoach

    1782–1828

    BIRTH 02 APR 1782 • , Northampton, North Carolina, USA

    DEATH 30 MAY 1828 • Trigg County, Kentucky, USA

    5th great-grandmother

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  • georgian1950
    replied
    How far back are you confident with your matrilineal line already? How much further do you want to go?

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  • LarryBurford
    started a topic Should I do the MtDNA test

    Should I do the MtDNA test

    I see there is a sale on the MtDNA test. I am H1 according to my 23&me results. Would the FTDNA test really benefit me in any way?
    Larry
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