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blevins13
29-11-16, 14:16
Recently I received DNA test results from 23 and me and I have discovered that I have many distant relatives in Greece and South Italy. Are these results reliable?

Angela
29-11-16, 16:26
Recently I received DNA test results from 23 and me and I have discovered that I have many distant relatives in Greece and South Italy. Are these results reliable?

In my personal opinion, if you're talking about third cousins and above it's probably not meaningful in terms of actual geneaology. It could just mean shared bits of dna from ancient migrations or even just random recombination of even smaller segments. The length of the segment is very important.

I'll give an example from my own results. Below the level of third cousins, all of my matches save one are not only all Italian, they're all northwestern Italian: Liguria, Emilia, Piemonte, Toscana. That makes sense to me given how much substructure there is in northern Italy. The oddity is an American family of Danish descent. Once I get to third cousin level, I start getting a lot of Americans of mostly British descent. I think that's just because they're the majority of the testees.

You also can't assume they've got the degree right. One of my matches is a fellow Ligurian, and is supposedly a second cousin. I tracked his lineage back as far as I could easily do, and didn't find the connection, so either we're more distantly related than that, or it's just common Ligurian/Lunigiana type ancestry.

blevins13
29-11-16, 20:16
Thanks for your answer.


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Joey D
29-11-16, 21:45
I'd expect an estimate of 2nd cousin to be something pretty close and traceable, even an extremely high probability of 3rd cousin, but yeh, after that, it's starting to get a bit too random.