DNA Testing Companies
Considering a genetic genealogy test? Look to these leaders in the DNA testing field:
This test provides information about your Y-DNA (if you’re male), mtDNA and autosomal DNA. Using innovative, visually appealing displays, the Ancestry Composition tool reveals the percentage of your DNA from each of more than 20 populations throughout the world. The Relative Finder tool compares your DNA to other test-takers in the company’s database in order to identify genetic relatives, although you’ll be able to communicate with matches only if they’re interested in sharing with you. You also can learn about your genetic predisposition to certain diseases and conditions, response to certain medications, and physical traits. Don’t forget to check out Ancestry Labs for an estimate of your Neanderthal ancestry.
Ancestry.com’s huge subscriber base means the AncestryDNA database is growing by leaps and bounds, with 3 million test-takers and counting. After testing, you can link your DNA to your Ancestry.com-hosted family tree, and the service will compare your tree to the Ancestry trees of any genetic relatives to help you find a common ancestor. AncestryDNA also offers a Genetic Ethnicity Summary that compares your results to the DNA signatures of populations around the world.
National Genographic Project
Autosomal DNA testing, called Geno 2.0, is a recent addition to this project’s Y-DNA and mtDNA testing. The Genographic Project is a joint nonprofit venture of the National Geographic Project and IBM to study human origins and migration. In addition to Y-DNA and mtDNA haplogroup information, the Geno 2.0 test estimates your ancient ancestral origins by comparing your DNA to more than 40 reference populations. You’ll also learn about your Neanderthal and Denisovan ancestry—two human lineages that have gone extinct, but that appear to have left their mark in our DNA. Note: To make the most of your results, you’ll need to upload your results to Family Tree DNA.
In addition to the analysis your testing company provides, use these third-party websites and software to look for matches and learn more about your DNA test results:
Although created to help adoptees find their birth families, anyone can use this free resource. Family Tree DNA customers can use these tools to easily download and store Family Finder matches, as well as information about each DNA segment shared with those matches. 23andMe customers can download certain test result data and information about genetic cousins.
Upload raw autosomal DNA results to the free GEDmatch to search for genetic cousins, compare your results to those of someone in the GEDmatch database, or use admixture calculators to examine your ancient ethnicity in meticulous detail. You can also use GEDmatch to compare your GEDCOM with a match’s to help identify your shared ancestors.
This free browser-based tool from Stanford University analyzes your 23andMe raw data. You can learn more about your genetic propensity for conditions such as diabetes and analyze your ancient ethnicity. An added benefit: Your raw data isn’t uploaded to another location.
This free software uses test results from 23andMe, Family Tree DNA and other testing companies to report additional health and trait information. The analysis is performed using SNPedia, a growing database of information about the links between disease, genetics and physical traits.
More Genetic Genealogy Resources