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Thread: How do genetic test "calculators" trace your ancestry to different locations?

  1. #1
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    How do genetic test "calculators" trace your ancestry to different locations?

    What are these "calculators" actually? What are the necessary inputs? How would they determine whether I have "Armenian" or "West Asian" ancestry?

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    That's exactly what I wanted to know, i.e. how is the "indigenous people" information gathered and is it really possible to trace the movement of our ancestors through different gene-pools and geo-locations through the past.

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    Regular Member Sile's Avatar
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    which calculators?

    If you mean all the autosomal tests via Gedmatch and similar to these ( eurogenes, dodecad, mdlp etc ) then the data is what is the same as your genes in which geographic area at this time. so it could say 5% danish today for you and in a years time when more people are tested, your 5% danish could be 2% danish and 3% flemish as an example. It does not tell you how you arrived in the area that you are in today.

    If you want one specifically for your genes, I only know that BGA do this test...........someone on this forum might know of other similar type of testers. But these tests only go back 2100 years max.
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    Regular Member Mars's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sile View Post
    which calculators?

    If you mean all the autosomal tests via Gedmatch and similar to these ( eurogenes, dodecad, mdlp etc ) then the data is what is the same as your genes in which geographic area at this time. so it could say 5% danish today for you and in a years time when more people are tested, your 5% danish could be 2% danish and 3% flemish as an example. It does not tell you how you arrived in the area that you are in today.

    If you want one specifically for your genes, I only know that BGA do this test...........someone on this forum might know of other similar type of testers. But these tests only go back 2100 years max.
    I wrote to Doug McDonald last weekend. I hope he sends me my data soon, I don't understand how the "calculators" (for example, Dodecad) actually work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mars View Post
    I wrote to Doug McDonald last weekend. I hope he sends me my data soon, I don't understand how the "calculators" (for example, Dodecad) actually work.
    Send Private Message to our member Dorianfinder.
    http://www.eupedia.com/forum/members/29455-Dorianfinder

    If it comes to inner working of calculators he is awesome.
    Be wary of people who tend to glorify the past, underestimate the present, and demonize the future.

  6. #6
    Red Baron Engel's Avatar
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    Autosomal calculators pretty much tell what you want it to tell.
    In other words they are completely useless

  7. #7
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    Ancestry calculators

    Quote Originally Posted by Engel View Post
    Autosomal calculators pretty much tell what you want it to tell.
    In other words they are completely useless
    I would not say that. Those calculators will tell you which part of the world the bulk of your ancestry is derived. You might think a mirror would suffice, but not everyone knows their immediate ancestors or may have ambiguous physical features. What if you were of island Greek ancestry, adopted in Sweden by Iranians. You would be confused about your actual ancestry. It is darn impossible to confuse a Swede, an Iranian or a Greek on an ancestry calculator, and comparisons with the results of others will show where that individual's results fit in.

    Ancestry calculators cannot tell you your precise ancestry as in finding your Polish great great granny's genetic contribution or link you with Vikings or link you with Phillip II of Macedon, but it will tell you if you are wholly European, mostly of European Mediterranean origins and have Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry but it cannot precisely locate you to a particular spot unless you are 100% of a particular ancestry for hundreds of years. Most people are of mixed ethnic group origins some which cannot be separated or assessed. You have to be reasonable in what those calculators can do.

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    Regular Member ebAmerican's Avatar
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    1 members found this post helpful.
    They are only accurate out to 3 or 4 generations, that's or 16 grandparents chromosomal contribution. More than that and it becomes to muddled. If we assume that a population is unchanged for a substantial period we can make educated guess based on the comparative method. There has been so much movement in the last 300 years that it's really only good for comparing what modern groups of people you most resemble autosomally, and where they currently live. It becomes more useful when we receive autosomal data from ancient sources and compare those to modern sources. You really need all the genetic components yDNA, mtDNA, and autosomal chromosomal testing and have a large enough comparative sample of modern and ancient sources to get an accurate picture of your genetic ancestry and their movements. I took the GEDMatch admixture test (Eurogenes K13) and got -

    North Atlantic - 44.88%
    Baltic - 29.37%
    West Med - 8.86%
    West Asian - 7.05%
    East Med 7.06%
    Amerindian - 1.2%
    the rest was noise under .05%

    The K13 reference Oracle data has the German source population followed by the Swedish and Dutch population most resembling my chromosomal make up. This fits in perfectly with my known ancestry reaching back 300 years. The calculators are nice because they can paint individual chromosomes and give you an idea which source population contributed most to each one. It's just one of many tools to get a clearer picture of you genetic ancestry.

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