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Old 04-15-2006, 12:50 PM   #1
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DNA Ancestry Tests

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The DNA Age: Seeking Ancestry in DNA Ties Uncovered by Tests

By Amy Harmon
The New York Times, April 12, 2006


Alan Moldawer's adopted twins, Matt and Andrew, had always thought of themselves as white. But when it came time for them to apply to college last year, Mr. Moldawer thought it might be worth investigating the origins of their slightly tan-tinted skin, with a new DNA kit that he had heard could determine an individual's genetic ancestry. The results, designating the boys 9 percent Native American and 11 percent northern African, arrived too late for the admissions process. But Mr. Moldawer, a business executive in Silver Spring, Md., says they could be useful in obtaining financial aid.

"Naturally when you're applying to college you're looking at how your genetic status might help you," said Mr. Moldawer, who knows that the twins' birth parents are white, but has little information about their extended family. "I have three kids going now, and you can bet that any advantage we can take we will."

Genetic tests, once obscure tools for scientists, have begun to influence everyday lives in many ways. The tests are reshaping people's sense of themselves — where they came from, why they behave as they do, what disease might be coming their way. It may be only natural then that ethnic ancestry tests, one of the first commercial products to emerge from the genetic revolution, are spurring a thorough exploration of the question, What's in it for me?

Many scientists criticize the ethnic ancestry tests as promising more than they can deliver. The legacy of an ancestor several generations back may be too diluted to show up. And the tests have a margin of error, so results showing a small amount of ancestry from one continent may not actually mean someone has any.

Given the tests' speculative nature, it seems unlikely that colleges, governments and other institutions will embrace them. But that has not stopped many test-takers from adopting new DNA-based ethnicities — and a sense of entitlement to the privileges typically reserved for them. Prospective employees with white skin are using the tests to apply as minority candidates, while some with black skin are citing their European ancestry in claiming inheritance rights. One Christian is using the test to claim Jewish genetic ancestry and to demand Israeli citizenship, and Americans of every shade are staking a DNA claim to Indian scholarships, health services and casino money.

"This is not just somebody's desire to go find out whether their grandfather is Polish," said Troy Duster, a sociologist at New York University who has studied the social impact of the tests. "It's about access to money and power."

Driving the pursuit of genetic bounty are start-up testing companies with names like DNA Tribes and Ethnoancestry. For $99 to $250, they promise to satisfy the human hunger to learn about one's origins — and sometimes much more. On its Web site, a leader in this cottage industry, DNA Print Genomics, once urged people to use it "whether your goal is to validate your eligibility for race-based college admissions or government entitlements." Tony Frudakis, the research director at DNAPrint, said the three-year-old company had coined the term American Indian Princess Syndrome to describe the insistent pursuit of Indian roots among many newly minted genetic genealogists. If the tests fail to turn up any, Mr. Frudakis added, "this type of customer is frequently quite angry."

DNAPrint calls the ethnic ancestry tests "recreational genomics" to distinguish them from the more serious medical and forensic applications of genetics. But as they ignite a debate over a variety of genetic birthrights, their impact may be further-reaching than anyone anticipated. Some social critics fear that the tests could undermine programs meant to compensate those legitimately disadvantaged because of their race. Others say they highlight an underlying problem with labeling people by race in an increasingly multiracial society.

"If someone appears to be white and then finds out they are not, they haven't experienced the kinds of things that affirmative action is supposed to remedy," said Lester Monts, senior vice provost for student affairs at the University of Michigan, which won the right to use race as a factor in admissions in a 2003 Supreme Court decision. Still, Michigan, like most other universities, relies on how students choose to describe themselves on admissions applications when assigning racial preferences.

Ashley Klett's younger sister marked the "Asian" box on her college applications this year, after the elder Ms. Klett, 20, took a DNA test that said she was 2 percent East Asian and 98 percent European. Whether it mattered they do not know, but she did get into the college of her choice. "And they gave her a scholarship," Ashley said.

Pearl Duncan has grander ambitions: she wants a castle. A descendant of Jamaican slaves, Ms. Duncan had already identified the Scottish slave owner who was her mother's great-great-grandfather through archival records. But the DNA test confirming her 10 percent British Isles ancestry gave her the nerve to contact the Scottish cousins who had built an oil company with his fortune. "It's one thing to feel satisfied to know something about your heritage, it's another to claim it," said Ms. Duncan, a writer in Manhattan. "There's a kind of checkmateness to the DNA."

The family's 11 castles, Ms. Duncan noted, were obtained with the proceeds of her African ancestors' labor. Perhaps they could spare one for her great-great-great-grandfather's black heirs? In case the paper records she had gathered were not persuasive, she invited male family members to take a DNA test that can identify a genetic signature passed from father to son. So far, no one has taken her up on the offer. Her appeal, Ms. Duncan said, is mostly playful. Less so is her insistence that the Scots stop referring to their common ancestors as simply "Virginia and West India merchants." "By acknowledging me, the Scots are beginning to acknowledge that these guys were slaveholders," she said.

Other slave descendants, known as the Freedmen, see DNA as bolstering their demand to be reinstated as members of the Indian tribes that once owned their ancestors. Under a treaty with the United States, the "Five Civilized Tribes" — Choctaws, Chickasaws, Creeks, Seminoles and Cherokees — freed their African slaves and in most cases made them citizens in the mid-1800's. More recently, the tribes have sought to exclude the slaves' descendants, depriving them of health benefits and other services.

At a meeting in South Coffeyville, Okla., last month, members of the Freedmen argued that DNA results revealing their Indian ancestry underscore the racism of the tribe's position that their ancestors were never true Indians. "Here's this DNA test that says yes, these people can establish some degree of Indian blood," said Marilyn Vann, a Cherokee Freedwoman who is suing for tribal citizenship in federal court. "It's important to combat those who want to oppress people of African descent in their own tribe."

As the assets of some tribes have swelled in the wake of the 1988 federal law allowing them to build casinos, there has been no shortage of petitioners stepping forward to assert their right to citizenship and a share of the wealth. Now, many of them are wielding genetic ancestry tests to bolster their claim. "It used to be 'someone said my grandmother was an Indian,' " says Joyce Walker, the enrollment clerk who regularly turns away DNA petitioners for the Mashantucket Pequot tribe, which operates the lucrative Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut. "Now it's 'my DNA says my grandmother was an Indian.' "

Recognizing the validity of DNA ancestry tests, some Indians say, would undermine tribal sovereignty. They say membership requires meeting the criteria in a tribe's constitution, which often requires documenting blood ties to a specific tribal member. DNA tests cannot pinpoint to which tribe an individual's ancestor belonged. But if tribes are perceived as blocking legitimate DNA applicants to limit payouts of casino money, experts say, it could damage their standing to enforce the treaties conferring the financial benefits so many covet. "Ancestry DNA tests are playing a part in the evolution of what the American public thinks matters," said Kim Tallbear, an American Indian studies professor at Arizona State University. "And tribes are dependent on the American public's good will, so they may have to bend."

Under no such pressure, Israeli authorities have so far denied John Haedrich what he calls his genetic birthright to citizenship without converting to Judaism. Under Israel's "law of return," only Jews may immigrate to Israel without special dispensation. Mr. Haedrich, a nursing home director who was raised a Christian, found through a DNA ancestry test that he bears a genetic signature commonly found among Jews. He says his European ancestors may have hidden their faith for fear of persecution.

Rabbis, too, have disavowed the claim: "DNA, schmeeNA," Mr. Haedrich, 44, said the rabbi at a local synagogue in Los Angeles told him when he called to discuss it. Undeterred, Mr. Haedrich has hired a lawyer to sue the Israeli government. As in America, he argues, DNA is widely accepted as evidence in forensics and paternity cases, so why not immigration? "Because I was raised a gentile does not change the fact that I am," Mr. Haedrich wrote in a full-page advertisement in the Jerusalem Post, "a Jew by birth."

Shonda Brinson, an African-American college student, is still trying to figure out how best to apply her DNA results on employment forms. In some cases, she has chosen to write in her actual statistics — 89 percent sub-Saharan African, 6 percent European and 5 percent East Asian. But she figures her best bet may be just checking all relevant boxes. "That way, of the three categories they won't be able to determine which percentage is bigger," Ms. Brinson said.
I do have some sympathy for the purposes for which the Freedmen and Ms. Duncan are using these tests. But the idea of people with newly discovered 8%-whatever genetic ancestry trying to parley that into minority scholarships, preferential placement or access to casino payouts--when they've experienced none of the historic-injustice-based obstacles these benefits are meant to address, or can contribute diversity to an environment only on paper--rankles with me. I suppose some might frame it as an anti-affirmative-action political statement, but that won't be the motive for most folks who'll try to do this.

I also wonder if there might be something uniquely American driving this particular take on what "knowing your ancestry" is "good for"--an underlying belief that it somehow enhances your identity, or makes you more special, more deserving of attention or esteem somehow. I can certainly understand why it's interesting in a hobbyish sort of way to establish that you're 6% Native American by DNA, but if it's never before played a decisive role in shaping your self-concept or life choices/opportunities, then why would it be important?

Better that than valuing it purely as an opportunity for financial gain, though.
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Old 04-15-2006, 01:06 PM   #2
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The American "identity" is inherently moldable, mainly because our ancestry is tied to other parts of the globe. As such, we have all these romantic fantasies associated with foreign cultures.

But, just to note, playing the "slave game" with one of those stories isn't all that wise of one. Pretty much all of world civilization has been built on slavery of some kinds, whether it be Egyptian slaves, Roman slaves from defeated enemies, or the entire European feudal system, in addition to African slaves. Maybe Britons of all kind should be asking the House of Windsor for their share of the wealth.

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Old 04-15-2006, 01:26 PM   #3
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It seems extremely disingenuous in some of the cases cited.

The case of the guy who wants Israeli citizenship is sort of interesting. I went to school with a girl whose mother was Jewish - considered herself ethnically Jewish, but was totally secular as were her parents. Her father was a French Canadian guy and the girl was raised Catholic. She went to Catholic schools all her life, and later on had her son baptized and everything. And regardless she'd still have members of her extended family insisting that both she and her son, Sean, were Jewish. So if they can force an identity on a person who in no way at all self-identifies as Jewish, then is it any less disingenuous of this guy to try to obtain Israeli citizenship claiming a similar basis? I understand that if your mother is Jewish, you're considered Jewish but when you've had mulitiple generations of non-practice and you've in fact been a member of a completely different religion your entire life, then where does it stop? And if it never ends, then to me, this Mr. Haedrich has to, by definition, have a fair claim as well.
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Old 04-15-2006, 02:10 PM   #4
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Re: DNA Ancestry Tests

Quote:
Originally posted by yolland

I do have some sympathy for the purposes for which the Freedmen and Ms. Duncan are using these tests. But the idea of people with newly discovered 8%-whatever genetic ancestry trying to parley that into minority scholarships, preferential placement or access to casino payouts--when they've experienced none of the historic-injustice-based obstacles these benefits are meant to address, or can contribute diversity to an environment only on paper--rankles with me. I suppose some might frame it as an anti-affirmative-action political statement, but that won't be the motive for most folks who'll try to do this.

I also wonder if there might be something uniquely American driving this particular take on what "knowing your ancestry" is "good for"--an underlying belief that it somehow enhances your identity, or makes you more special, more deserving of attention or esteem somehow. I can certainly understand why it's interesting in a hobbyish sort of way to establish that you're 6% Native American by DNA, but if it's never before played a decisive role in shaping your self-concept or life choices/opportunities, then why would it be important?

Better that than valuing it purely as an opportunity for financial gain, though.
#1 It appears most of the people getting the test that says they are this percentage African, this percentage Asian and this percentage European are doing the "DNA Print Genomics" test. They need to remember to read what their results mean. Typically, percentages below 10% are refered to as "statistical noise" and may not actually mean any ethnicity at all for that particular group.

#2 There was a women from Paris who's family had never lived in the America's and she got a solid 15% Native American ancestry rating. The test cannot tell when and how you got those genetic markers. Europeans who never lived in the America's likely received their Genetic markers for native american ancestry from isolated groups of people who were decsendent from Native American groups prior to their movement from Asia to America. Invading Asian tribes may also have had the same or similar genetic markers as native americans and spread them among Europeans during their invasions. Through the years though, only isolated groups of people in Europe would retain such markers over such a long period of time, to a degree that would show up in a DNA test of this level, but it obviously has happened.

#3 For the person in the United States who does score say a 15% Native American ethnicity which is well above what would be considered statistical noise, they still don't know when, where and how they received these roots. It may not be because of a mixed relationship back in the 1600s between a European and a native american in Virginia. It may have happened 15,000 years ago in an isolated community, in the Ural Mountains in Russia. The person would still have to prove that their Native American ancestry was the result of a relationship that occured in America which is possible given that there are records in many places of the early colonial settlements.

#4 Lets remember that every male on the planet has the genetic marker of a man who lived in Africa 60,000 years ago. You only have to go back 60,000 years to find the "nearest common ancestor" for everyone living today. In that sense, were all 100% African.
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Old 04-15-2006, 02:54 PM   #5
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Re: Re: DNA Ancestry Tests

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Originally posted by STING2
#1 It appears most of the people getting the test that says they are this percentage African, this percentage Asian and this percentage European are doing the "DNA Print Genomics" test. They need to remember to read what their results mean. Typically, percentages below 10% are refered to as "statistical noise" and may not actually mean any ethnicity at all for that particular group.

#2 There was a women from Paris who's family had never lived in the America's and she got a solid 15% Native American ancestry rating. The test cannot tell when and how you got those genetic markers. Europeans who never lived in the America's likely received their Genetic markers for native american ancestry from isolated groups of people who were decsendent from Native American groups prior to their movement from Asia to America. Invading Asian tribes may also have had the same or similar genetic markers as native americans and spread them among Europeans during their invasions. Through the years though, only isolated groups of people in Europe would retain such markers over such a long period of time, to a degree that would show up in a DNA test of this level, but it obviously has happened.

#3 For the person in the United States who does score say a 15% Native American ethnicity which is well above what would be considered statistical noise, they still don't know when, where and how they received these roots. It may not be because of a mixed relationship back in the 1600s between a European and a native american in Virginia. It may have happened 15,000 years ago in an isolated community, in the Ural Mountains in Russia. The person would still have to prove that their Native American ancestry was the result of a relationship that occured in America which is possible given that there are records in many places of the early colonial settlements.

#4 Lets remember that every male on the planet has the genetic marker of a man who lived in Africa 60,000 years ago. You only have to go back 60,000 years to find the "nearest common ancestor" for everyone living today. In that sense, were all 100% African.
All good points. To add a #5, it's thought that all humans arose from approximately 10,000 individuals 75,000 years ago.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toba_catastrophe_theory

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According to the Toba catastrophe theory, modern human evolution was affected by a recent, large volcanic event. The theory was proposed by Stanley H. Ambrose of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.[1][2]

Knowledge of human prehistory is largely theoretical, based in fossil, archeological, and genetic evidence. Within the last three to five million years, after human and other ape lineages diverged from the hominid stem-line, the human line produced a variety of human species. According to the Toba catastrophe theory, a massive volcanic eruption changed the course of human history by severely reducing the human population.

Around 70–75 thousand years ago the Toba caldera in Indonesia erupted with an energy release equivalent to about one gigaton of TNT, three thousand times greater than that of Mount St. Helens. According to Ambrose, this led to a decrease in average global temperatures by 3 to 3.5 degrees Celsius for several years. This massive environmental change is believed to have created population bottlenecks in the various human species that existed at the time; this in turn accelerated differentiation of the isolated human populations, eventually leading to the extinction of all the other human species except for the branch that became modern humans.

Some geological evidence and computed models support the plausibility of the Toba catastrophe theory, and genetic evidence suggests that all humans alive today, despite their apparent variety, are descended from a very small population, perhaps around 10,000 individuals. Using the average rates of genetic mutation, some geneticists have estimated that this population lived at a time coinciding with the Toba event (see also Mitochondrial Eve and Y-chromosomal Adam).

According to this theory, humans once again fanned out from Africa after Toba when the climate and other factors permitted. They migrated first to Indochina and Australia, and later to the Fertile Crescent and the Middle East. Migration routes to Asia created population centers in Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, and India. Differences in skin color appeared as a result of varied melanin levels as local adaptations to varying ultraviolet intensities. Europe became populated by migrants from the Caspian Sea region when the last ice age ended and Europe became more hospitable.
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Old 04-15-2006, 03:03 PM   #6
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Re: Re: DNA Ancestry Tests

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Originally posted by STING2

#3 For the person in the United States who does score say a 15% Native American ethnicity which is well above what would be considered statistical noise, they still don't know when, where and how they received these roots. It may not be because of a mixed relationship back in the 1600s between a European and a native american in Virginia. It may have happened 15,000 years ago in an isolated community, in the Ural Mountains in Russia. The person would still have to prove that their Native American ancestry was the result of a relationship that occured in America which is possible given that there are records in many places of the early colonial settlements.
wouldn't it be awfully unlikely that you would still have 15% of your genes from an ancestor 15,000 years back? It seems to me the ancestor would likely be more along the lines of a great-grandparent...
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Old 04-15-2006, 05:25 PM   #7
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Race is a social construct -- not a reality in any scientific sense.

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Old 04-15-2006, 05:57 PM   #8
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Thanks for the comments and clarifications about genetic lineage, STING and melon. I'd certainly never heard of Europeans with "Native American ancestry" before! I wasn't suggesting, however, that I believe these tests to show anything scientifically definitive--I'm really more interested in the moral and philosophical implications of how they've intertwined with identity politics. I think DNAPrint's characterization of their services as "recreational genomics" sums it up pretty well. Though I do remain sympathetic to folks like the Freedmen and Ms. Duncan, in that their foremost goal is simply to get people who've been denying it to admit that their ancestors did indeed commit verifiable historic wrongs. (Although the case of the Freedmen is pretty complicated; they weren't freed and given tribal membership until after the Civil War--during which the 5 Civilized Tribes formally supported the Confederacy--and it was actually the federal Dawes Commission which later introduced the categories of "Freedman" and blood quantum, that eventually caused so much identity trouble.)
Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
So if they can force an identity on a person who in no way at all self-identifies as Jewish, then is it any less disingenuous of this guy to try to obtain Israeli citizenship claiming a similar basis?
Not sure I fully accept the analogy here, in that I don't think it's incumbent on the Israeli government to take non-Jews' ideas of who is(n't) a Jew into account when formulating their own. However, as far as Mr. Haedrich's case goes, his ancestry is considerably more murky than your friend's:
Quote:
from the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles
July 22, 2005


Haedrich, 43 and owner of a nursing home for the elderly in Glendale, said that all his immediate relatives are dead or estranged, that Judaism was never practiced in his home, and that the DNA test is the only proof that he’s a Jew. He said that he discovered his Jewish sense of identity five years ago, when he visited Krakow and Auschwitz and "suddenly had a feeling that I was Jewish.... I also heard that one relative in Poland had been a rabbi."

The actual 8-page DNA analysis is not as definitive. It states that "The distribution of the haplotype [genetic marker], combined with the origin of the surname, suggests a Polish Ashkenazic Jewish family background within the past 500 years," on the father’s side. On the maternal side, "The subject is descended from a lineage ... founded 16,000 to 20,000 years ago in the Mediterranean or Middle East."
So basically, all he "knows" is that he had some Jewish relatives on his father's side--no idea which relatives, how far back (within 5 centuries), or how many--while his mother's ancestry may or may not include Jewish lineage at all. A description which doubtless applies to a great many people whom no one--themselves, Jews or non-Jews--would ever consider Jewish. Not very convincing stuff.

It is admittedly true though that if, hypothetically speaking, your friend or her son were to seek Israeli citizenship, they'd most likely be told they were not eligible for automatic citizenship, but would instead have to live in Israel for 3 years first, then try for naturalized citizenship. That's a precedent established by the 1962 Israeli Supreme Court case Rufeisen v. Minister of the Interior, where the Court ruled that Catholic monk Brother Daniel Rufeisen--though Jewish by birth (on which grounds the Chief Rabbinate ruled he should be given automatic citizenship)--was not eligible for automatic citizenship, on the grounds that the Israel's Law of Return is based on "the Jewish national-historic consciousness and the ordinary secular meaning of the term 'Jew' as understood by Jews." (Rufeisen was, however, invited to live in Israel and apply for naturalized citizenship after 3 years, which he did; and he lived as an Israeli citizen in Haifa's Carmelite monastery until his death in 1998.)

While benchmark in establishing both Jewish religious law and Jewish secular custom as guides to answering "Who is a Jew?", the case was a painful one, because Rufeisen was no ordinary convert: a Polish Jew from Oswiecim by birth, and a lifelong Zionist, he'd spent most of the WWII years hiding in a Catholic monastery in Nazi-occupied Mir (where he converted). While there, he singlehandedly saved Mir's 300 Jews from liquidation: after overhearing a Nazi military policeman discussing the planned date with an SS officer, Rufeisen created a distraction for the police, then warned the Jews to flee. After the War, he returned to Poland, where he studied for and earned ordination, before making his way to Israel. Rufeisen came to Israel not to proselytize--the Catholic Church does not proselytize to Israeli Jews--but to be reunited with his brother (who'd managed to flee to Israel early in the War years) and his surviving friends from Oswiecim and Mir. So, a sad case, although not ultimately one with a sad ending.

Not like you needed to know all that though...
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Old 04-15-2006, 06:17 PM   #9
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Re: Re: Re: DNA Ancestry Tests

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Originally posted by Kristie


wouldn't it be awfully unlikely that you would still have 15% of your genes from an ancestor 15,000 years back? It seems to me the ancestor would likely be more along the lines of a great-grandparent...
Its not 15% of your genes from an ancestor 15,000 years ago, but 15% of your genes coming from a recent ancestor who lived in an isolated area, where native american genes were common from a mixing that occured thousands of years earlier. The isolation of this group meant that the genes were passed back and forth within the group and were not diluted from mixing with other groups. It does occur, and is one of only a few ways to explain why a Women from Paris can have 15% Native American ancestry without any of her family having lived in America.
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Old 04-15-2006, 06:21 PM   #10
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Re: Re: Re: DNA Ancestry Tests

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Originally posted by melon


All good points. To add a #5, it's thought that all humans arose from approximately 10,000 individuals 75,000 years ago.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toba_catastrophe_theory



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Indeed this may have occured and while other relatives of Humans left Africa at earlier times, our ancestors did not leave and have successful, lasting, migrations out of Africa until about 60,000 BC.
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Old 04-15-2006, 06:33 PM   #11
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yolland, thanks! That was really interesting.

As for the genetic typing - the 15% of genomic identity is actually a misnomer. You have far more than "15% genes" identical to everyone else - obviously. When this type of testing is done, as far as I'm aware, they choose to look selectively at given markers which have been predetermined based on sequencing similarities and so on. As such they have already optimized the testing since they are looking at only at markers that have been shown to be relevant in ethnic genotyping. The rest of your genome, as far as the comparison is done, isn't looked at.

Quote:
Race is a social construct -- not a reality in any scientific sense.
Not necessarily true. Race has both a social and a biological component.

Genetically speaking, you can look at markers such as sickle cell anemia or malaria resistance (in black populations) or the prevalence of Tay-Sachs (in Jewish populations), etc. and see that within a race or an ethnicity there are certain genetic predispositions.
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Old 04-15-2006, 06:36 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by Anu
Race is a social construct -- not a reality in any scientific sense.

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We should really tell the Pima Indians that there is no genetic basis for their extremely high risk of diabetes

Variation among a species populations that broadly match geographic barriers between continents, how novel.
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Old 04-15-2006, 08:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
yolland, thanks! That was really interesting.

As for the genetic typing - the 15% of genomic identity is actually a misnomer. You have far more than "15% genes" identical to everyone else - obviously. When this type of testing is done, as far as I'm aware, they choose to look selectively at given markers which have been predetermined based on sequencing similarities and so on. As such they have already optimized the testing since they are looking at only at markers that have been shown to be relevant in ethnic genotyping. The rest of your genome, as far as the comparison is done, isn't looked at.

The current test looks at 175 markers and can determine your percentages for Native American, European, African, and Asian ancestry. A more extensive test is available for those who receive a score of at least 50% European ancestry. This extensive test can give you your percentages for four types of European Ancestry: Northern European, Southern European, Middle Eastern, Indian. Yep, they lump in Middle Eastern and Indian genetic markers into the European group. They are currently working on a more extensive test for those four European sub-groups as well.

Test have been done with people who have verified ancestral backgrounds in particular groups going back many generations and the genetic test has proved to be accurate with the rate of error well below 10%. As far as your entire genome, there is no reason to be looking at markers that are not relevant to determining ethnic ancestry.
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Old 04-15-2006, 09:12 PM   #14
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Originally posted by STING2
As far as your entire genome, there is no reason to be looking at markers that are not relevant to determining ethnic ancestry.
Well that's why I brought it up, because I was wondering why you were referring to "15% of genes are identical" when in fact these tests are not based on sequencing genes to begin with.
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Old 04-15-2006, 09:37 PM   #15
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Well that's why I brought it up, because I was wondering why you were referring to "15% of genes are identical" when in fact these tests are not based on sequencing genes to begin with.
Genetic markers relevant to determining ones ancestry. Sorry I did not use the correct terminology but I think its generally understood that were discussing determining ethnic ancestry in this thread.
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