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  • So Confused. Please help.

    Hello, I am new to this. However, I have read some of the tutorials, and it seems the more I read the more confused I become.

    I am really hoping some of you can help me better understand what the information below means in terms of shared genetic relationships with my close matches.

    Thank you for any assistance you can provide.



    Me(female): Haplogroup: L2e

    Origins:
    71% African
    28% European
    16% Scandinavian
    10% West Central Europe
    2% Finland and Northern Siberian
    1% Native American


    My Shared Genetic Relationships (All males)

    1)Haplogroup: H = 2nd - 4th Cousin
    96% European
    Shared cM = 53
    Matches me on 8 segments

    2)Haplogroup: H = 3rd - 5th Cousin
    100% European
    Shared cM = 42
    Matches me on 4 segments

    3)Haplogroup: J1c3a1 = 3rd - 5th Cousin
    100% European
    Shared cM = 43
    Matches me on 9 segments

    4)Haplogroup: T2f-T19 = 3rd - 5th Cousin
    98% European
    Shared cM = 24
    Matches me on 3 segments

  • #2
    Originally posted by Sunflower View Post
    Hello, I am new to this. However, I have read some of the tutorials, and it seems the more I read the more confused I become.

    I am really hoping some of you can help me better understand what the information below means in terms of shared genetic relationships with my close matches.

    Thank you for any assistance you can provide.



    Me(female): Haplogroup: L2e

    Origins:
    71% African
    28% European
    16% Scandinavian
    10% West Central Europe
    2% Finland and Northern Siberian
    1% Native American


    My Shared Genetic Relationships (All males)

    1)Haplogroup: H = 2nd - 4th Cousin
    96% European
    Shared cM = 53
    Matches me on 8 segments

    2)Haplogroup: H = 3rd - 5th Cousin
    100% European
    Shared cM = 42
    Matches me on 4 segments

    3)Haplogroup: J1c3a1 = 3rd - 5th Cousin
    100% European
    Shared cM = 43
    Matches me on 9 segments

    4)Haplogroup: T2f-T19 = 3rd - 5th Cousin
    98% European
    Shared cM = 24
    Matches me on 3 segments
    Hi Sunflower,
    Your mitochondrial DNA looks like it is from Africa. That is only a single line in your pedigree, your mother's mother's mothers' mother etc. all the way back to Africa. However, you have other lines that do not follow the all-female line. You appear to be mostly African (71%), Native American (1%) and European (28%). Does that seem likely to you? This would be a common pattern for African Americans.

    Those males of European heritage in your match list have mitochondrial DNA that is not African. Their mother's mother's mother etc. came from Europe most likely. Males get mitochondrial DNA from their mother but it stops with them. A male does not pass his mtDNA down to his children. These males can still be your cousins even if it is not through the all-female line. Perhaps your African cousins simply have not been tested yet. Some populations are not well sampled in the database. You are likely to find people related to you who are of European descent and they may not have recent African ancestry.

    Comment


    • #3
      @Sunflower

      Distant DNA matching is a little bit of a guessing game (science behind it is such), so many people found it valuable to take a look at the Longest Block one is sharing with a match. Some find it that quality of the match (guess) is only good when the Longest Block is above 20cM, some when it is above 15cM.

      You have to select Show Full View (it is on the left) to see the the Longest Block values. Unfortunately, at this moment, sorting by Longest Block values can be selected, but it does not work...

      I do not know whether in the forum there is anybody who had found common paper trail ancestry with a match with whom they shared less than 12cM of the Longest Block.

      Good luck - W.

      P.S. The above means that I recall someone having a real (not an unproven cousin) with whom their Longest Block was 12cM.

      Comment


      • #4
        There is a very steep learning curve for genetic genealogy, so do not be intimidated - it just takes time.

        As far as Family Finder matches, I'd recommend ignoring the total segment counts as they include small regions of matching DNA that can be misleading as far as genealogy. As someone mentioned, going by longest segment might be more useful for understanding how close someone is related to you.

        Using Y or mtDNA haplogroups to help understand Family Finder results is usually far less useful than newcomers might expect.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by dna View Post
          I do not know whether in the forum there is anybody who had found common paper trail ancestry with a match with whom they shared less than 12cM of the Longest Block.
          I have a 7th cousin by paper trail with a longest block of 8.68, of course I cannot confirm that the segement actually comes from that common ancestor.

          Comment


          • #6
            @awheaton

            Originally posted by awheaton View Post
            I have a 7th cousin by paper trail with a longest block of 8.68, of course I cannot confirm that the segment actually comes from that common ancestor.


            I guess a book could (should?) be written about DNA matching . And I should have been more precise...

            Finding the 7th cousin is beyond the practical and theoretical limits of Family Finder. Ordinarily, the 7th cousins would share around 0.21cM (see http://www.isogg.org/wiki/Autosomal_DNA_statistics).

            W.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by dna View Post
              Distant DNA matching is a little bit of a guessing game (science behind it is such), so many people found it valuable to take a look at the Longest Block one is sharing with a match. Some find it that quality of the match (guess) is only good when the Longest Block is above 20cM, some when it is above 15cM.

              You have to select Show Full View (it is on the left) to see the the Longest Block values. Unfortunately, at this moment, sorting by Longest Block values can be selected, but it does not work...

              I do not know whether in the forum there is anybody who had found common paper trail ancestry with a match with whom they shared less than 12cM of the Longest Block.

              Good luck - W.

              P.S. The above means that I recall someone having a real (not an unproven cousin) with whom their Longest Block was 12cM.
              My mother has a match, Longest block 8.55CM with total shared 41CM. According to genealogical records they are 6th cousins once removed.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by dna View Post


                I guess a book could (should?) be written about DNA matching . And I should have been more precise...

                Finding the 7th cousin is beyond the practical and theoretical limits of Family Finder. Ordinarily, the 7th cousins would share around 0.21cM (see http://www.isogg.org/wiki/Autosomal_DNA_statistics).

                W.
                Those numbers are averages. DNA changes randomly and after 5 generations, which is at the 4th cousin level, the longest block that is passed down varies widely. It is not impractical nor beyond theoretical limits of Family Finder to find a paper trail to someone that matches at less than 12cM, but over 7cM, that go back further than a 7th cousin. I have done that several times.

                Comment


                • #9
                  So confused. Please help.

                  Hi Kathy Johnston,

                  Thank you so much for your response. It was very helpful.

                  Yes, my results seem to be what I expected, not really any surprises. I understood (so I thought) the basics of mtDNA, i.e. me, my mother, her mother's maternal line, and so forth.

                  However, I didn't understand how the shared genetic relationships factored in with the four males of mostly European ancestry whose mtDNA was so different than mine. It wasn't so much their genders as it was their haplogroups that had me scratching my head.

                  My mother's maternal line goes back to a a male and female born in the mid-1800's who were mulatto. My mother's paternal line goes back to a Native American female born in the early 1800's who had six children with a white male born in the same time period. Blue eyes are quite common in my mother's family, including her 2 siblings, her father, and some of his siblings. So, the 28% European was not unexpected.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    So confused. Please help.

                    Hi dna,

                    Thanks you so much for responding. My longest block is:
                    96% European
                    Haplogroup: H = 2nd - 4th Cousin

                    Shared cM = 53
                    Matches me on 8 segments

                    This one, and the other 3 that I listed above are my longest blocks. The blocks range from 53.00 to 24.00. They all show up as matches in “The Matrix”. The thing is, they all have a different mtDNA haplogroup than me. Kathy Johnston helped me better understand why that might be.

                    After reading your response, I went back and collected the next group of Longest Blocks which ranged from 40.00 to 28.00 but none showed up as a match, not even in “The Matrix”.

                    Thanks again, for all your help.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      So confused. Please help.

                      Hi S9 H9,

                      Thank you so much for responding.

                      There is a very steep learning curve for genetic genealogy, so do not be intimidated - it just takes time.
                      I totally agree. I've read the tutorials on this site in search of answers to my questions, however, they seem to only “scratch” the surface. I feel my learning curve is so steep, to the point I don't even know how to formulate the questions for the answers I need.

                      Thanks again for all your help.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        So confused. Please help.

                        To Kathy Johnston,

                        Some populations are not well sampled in the database.
                        I'm starting to come to that same conclusion. For example, the L2e haplogroup. If I recall correctly, I think there was one or two in the mitosearch database.

                        According to FTDNA, 65% of my African origins are from West Africa. Further, according to FTDNA L2e has origins in Guinea-Bissau.

                        However, under "My Origins", the “Heat Map” covers almost the entire African region EXCEPT the African nations of West Africa, i.e. Guinea-Bissau, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Senegal Gambia, Cape Verde, Mauritania, Mali, etc. I don't have a clue why they are not included.

                        I have searched high and low on the internet, and found very little about this haplogroup (L2e) except it was formerly labeled as L2d2 (I think).

                        I didn't mention this in my initial post because I didn't want to further confuse things, but very early on I was contacted by someone who shared the same haplogroup, L2e, who matched me only on HVR1, rather than both HVR1 and HVR 2.

                        The geographical locations of their ancestors were very near to mine, and shared the same surname. However, the common surname was that of my mother's paternal line, and not that of her maternal line.

                        So far, I have not been able to make a connection. Just thought it was interesting that we shared a commonality on my mother's paternal line.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Sunflower View Post
                          Hi Kathy Johnston,

                          Thank you so much for your response. It was very helpful.

                          Yes, my results seem to be what I expected, not really any surprises. I understood (so I thought) the basics of mtDNA, i.e. me, my mother, her mother's maternal line, and so forth.

                          However, I didn't understand how the shared genetic relationships factored in with the four males of mostly European ancestry whose mtDNA was so different than mine. It wasn't so much their genders as it was their haplogroups that had me scratching my head.

                          My mother's maternal line goes back to a a male and female born in the mid-1800's who were mulatto. My mother's paternal line goes back to a Native American female born in the early 1800's who had six children with a white male born in the same time period. Blue eyes are quite common in my mother's family, including her 2 siblings, her father, and some of his siblings. So, the 28% European was not unexpected.
                          I've bolded your statement above which I think indicates the problem you're having that's confusing you. The problem is treating mtDNA and autosomal DNA as the same for testing result purposes. The two are like apples and oranges.

                          It seems that you're thinking about your Family Finder matches from the viewpoint of your mtDNA haplogroup. None of the autosomal tests, including Family Finder, take into account your mtDNA haplogroup when finding matches for you in the database. The matches are all based on shared segments of a certain size found on the 22 pairs of autosomal chromosome and the pair of x chromosomes for a woman (just the one x for a man).

                          The mtDNA is passed down from mother to children, sons and daughters. Then the daughters pass it down to their children. Since the father is not involved at all in the children's mtDNA, there is no recombination. The mtDNA is strictly from one line in your tree - mother, maternal grandmother, maternal grandmother's mother, etc. You can call this the strict maternal line.

                          At the level of just gg-grandparents, you have 16 ancestors, but only one of them is in your strict maternal line. The other 15 gg-grandparents may or probably have different mtDNA haplogroups than you have. Their descendants may or may not have the same mtDNA haplogroup as you, but they share autosomal DNA with you from the common gg-grandparent. The Family Finder results are finding that shared DNA from the common gg-grandparent and telling you that you and the match are cousins, even though you don't have the same mtDNA haplogroup.

                          As you mentioned above, you have known mulatto ancestors. So, some of your ancestors were white. The matches with European mtDNA haplogroups you have are probably descendants of some of your white ancestors.
                          Last edited by MMaddi; 13 December 2014, 01:15 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            So confused. Please help....I Think I've Got It!

                            Hi MMaddi,

                            Thank you so much for your response, I really appreciate it.

                            I've bolded your statement above which I think indicates the problem you're having that's confusing you. The problem is treating mtDNA and autosomal DNA as the same for testing result purposes. The two are like apples and oranges.

                            It seems that you're thinking about your Family Finder matches from the viewpoint of your mtDNA haplogroup.
                            What you're saying is absolutely correct! That's exactly how I have been thinking. I did expect matches for white cousins, I just didn't realize that they may not share the same haplogroup.

                            Thank you so much for putting your response in such simple terms. It was written like a page straight out of “mtDNA For Dummies” by MMaddi (just for me), and now I think I'm finally starting to get it; mtDNA haplogroups are not necessarily shared with distant cousins.

                            Again, thank you so much for meticulously breaking it all down for me.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              The Family Finder is a totally different test than the mtDNA test. The haplogroup that you have comes from your mother's mother's mother's line and distant cousins found through the FF test can come from any line back from you, not just the narrow maternal line shown by the mtDNA test.

                              I have people who match me exactly on the full mtDNA test, so we share a common ancestress, but they don't match me at all on the FF test as our common ancestress is way back beyond the scope of a FF match.

                              You may never find a person that exactly matches your mtDNA haplogroup unless you actually have a close maternal line descendent test. Y-DNA (paternal line) and mtDNA (maternal line) tests are great for confirming matches you already suspect down your father's or mother's lines, while FF autosomal-DNA is good for discovering relations who are nearer in genealogy to you.

                              Comment

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