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Thread: Why is autosomal DNA ethnicity estimate so different from my mtDNA ethnicity?

  1. #1
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    MtDNA haplogroup
    H1

    Ethnic group
    USA, Great Britain, Ireland, Norway, Poland, Austria, Germany.
    Country: United States



    Why is autosomal DNA ethnicity estimate so different from my mtDNA ethnicity?

    Question from a NEWBIE:

    I got my autosomal DNA testing performed from AncestryDNA.
    Africa0%

    • Other Regions Tested


    • Ivory Coast/Ghana


      0%


    • Africa South-Central Hunter-Gatherers


      0%


    • Senegal


      0%


    • Cameroon/Congo


      0%


    • Nigeria


      0%


    • Africa North


      0%


    • Mali


      0%


    • Benin/Togo


      0%


    • Africa Southeastern Bantu


      0%



    America0%

    • Other Regions Tested


    • Native American


      0%



    Asia0%

    • Other Regions Tested


    • Asia East


      0%


    • Asia Central


      0%


    • Asia South


      0%



    Europe99%

    • Scandinavia


      53%


    • Ireland


      14%


    • Italy/Greece


      12%


    • Great Britain


      10%


    • Trace Regions


      10%

    • Europe East


      6%


    • Iberian Peninsula


      3%


    • Finland/Northwest Russia


      < 1%


    • Other Regions Tested


    • Europe West


      0%


    • European Jewish


      0%



    Pacific Islander0%

    • Other Regions Tested


    • Polynesia


      0%


    • Melanesia


      0%



    West Asia< 1%

    • Trace Regions


      < 1%

    • Caucasus


      < 1%


    • Other Regions Tested


    • Middle East


      0%



    I just had received my mtDNA results from 23 & Me. These are the Ancestry composition that 23 & Me came up with for me.
    European99.8%

    Northwestern European95.5%
    British & Irish35.5%
    French & German12.2%
    Scandinavian10.8%
    Finnish0.0%
    Broadly Northwestern European36.9%

    Eastern European2.0%

    Southern European0.7%
    Iberian0.4%
    Sardinian0.0%
    Italian0.0%
    Balkan0.0%
    Broadly Southern European0.2%

    Ashkenazi Jewish0.0%

    Broadly European1.7%


    South Asian< 0.1%

    Broadly South Asian< 0.1%


    East Asian & Native American< 0.1%

    East Asian< 0.1%
    Japanese0.0%
    Korean0.0%
    Yakut0.0%
    Mongolian0.0%
    Chinese0.0%
    Broadly East Asian< 0.1%

    Southeast Asian0.0%

    Native American0.0%

    Broadly East Asian & Native American0.0%


    Sub-Saharan African< 0.1%

    West African0.0%

    East African0.0%

    Central & South African0.0%

    Broadly Sub-Saharan African< 0.1%


    Middle Eastern & North African0.0%

    Middle Eastern0.0%

    North African0.0%

    Broadly Middle Eastern & North African0.0%


    Oceanian0.0%

    Broadly Oceanian0.0%


    Unassigned< 0.1%



    I don't understand how the autosomal AncestryDNA can say I am 53% Scandinavian with Great Britain and Ireland combined with 24%, and then the mtDNA say that I am only 10.8% Scandinavian, and Great Britain and Ireland combined 35.5%. I won't even begin with the Italy/Greece or the France/Germany. Is there some information out there that will explain why there is such a wild difference between the tests? My mtDNA haplogroup came up as H1. Thank you for any assistance. Sherri

  2. #2
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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.


    You are comparing the results of two autosomal reports. These reports are based on genetic markers spread out on all your chromosomes except X (and Y, but since you are female you don't have one). I have compared the accuracy of autosomal reports, and AncestryDNA is not particularly good. I think that 23andMe's results are more realistic, but still not perfectly accurate.

    As for mtDNA it has nothing to do with the percentages you posted here. MtDNA is the DNA of mitochondria, organelles found inside our body's cells, but which is completely separate from our 23 pairs of chromosomes. MtDNA is only used to trace back ancestry from mother to mother (single line of ancestors), and it can only inform you about very distant ancestry, i.e. where you ancestors came from 4,000 to 10,000 years ago. I think that DNA testing companies, and especially FTDNA, are often deceiving customers to believe that it is useful to determine recent ancestry, which is a blatant lie. Just forget about mtDNA. It's useful to track the movement of prehistoric populations, but that's it.
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