MyHeritage Releases Major Updates and Improvements

By Ashlee Peck

myheritage updates

On January 11, 2018, MyHeritage rolled out major updates and improvements to their DNA Matching, which they announced with a statement on their blog. Here’s what you need to know:

MyHeritage DNA Matching

If you’re not familiar with MyHeritage‘s DNA Matching program, it’s a system that compares DNA results in the MyHeritage database to each other, whether the DNA is from a MyHeritage kit or is uploaded to their site from your previous test. This comparison allow users to find other individuals they share DNA segments with, and helps explain how these individuals are related. To date, MyHeritage’s database contains DNA results for 1.o75 million people, and their system updates your matches daily, looking for new matches in the system. Users are notified by a weekly email about the best new matches found in the system that week.

Updated Matches

If you’re already a MyHeritage member and have previously received matches, you will now see modified and enhanced matches. Things you may notice include:

  • New matches
  • Removal of false positives
  • Increased parameters for more accurate values

New users will receive the higher quality matches from day one.

Improved DNA Matching

  • Significantly improved accuracy of imputation by increasing the number of reference genomes by more than tenfold
  • Fixed previously existing errors in phasing
  • Re-calibrated the threshold for genotyping errors in the matching stage
  • Matches now categorized by high, medium, and low confidence
  • Inclusion of more distant matches
  • Better stitching of adjacent segments to compensate for remaining phasing errors between segments

Bonus improvements

  • MyHeritage has trained an additional classifier algorithm  to classify Ashkenazi relationships with higher resolution than any other DNA service
  • Revisions to the user interface of the DNA Matches for better consistency with the other DNA screens