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Old 03-07-2018, 03:51 PM
 
Location: The High Desert
8,164 posts, read 4,466,899 times
Reputation: 15438

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I met a woman who has taken several DNA tests and is getting ready to take yet another. She claims that the field is advancing so quickly that you need to keep taking tests to keep up with the science. I must be missing something. Our DNA is what it is and the testing produces raw data that can be analyzed repeatedly as new population studies are incorporated into the mix. My test results should reflect the latest information and be updated if needed...right? My results changed slightly with the original testing results but not much. When I export the results to other company platforms I get some odd differences in the results but I consider those to be related to differing techniques in analysis. Some of the differences can be reconciled and some are way out in left field.


I understand the issue of advanced haplogroup testing but is there any reason to keep getting my DNA autosomal testing done repeatedly...like every year or even more often?
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Old 03-07-2018, 04:28 PM
 
Location: Ohio
21,334 posts, read 15,103,279 times
Reputation: 17764
Quote:
Originally Posted by SunGrins View Post
I met a woman who has taken several DNA tests and is getting ready to take yet another. She claims that the field is advancing so quickly that you need to keep taking tests to keep up with the science. I must be missing something. Our DNA is what it is and the testing produces raw data that can be analyzed repeatedly as new population studies are incorporated into the mix. My test results should reflect the latest information and be updated if needed...right? My results changed slightly with the original testing results but not much. When I export the results to other company platforms I get some odd differences in the results but I consider those to be related to differing techniques in analysis. Some of the differences can be reconciled and some are way out in left field.


I understand the issue of advanced haplogroup testing but is there any reason to keep getting my DNA autosomal testing done repeatedly...like every year or even more often?
No, there's absolutely no reason. The woman is either a nutter or grotesquely misinformed.

Once you've identified your haplogroup, you can purchase SNP tests which do not require any additional material from you. Family Tree DNA will do SNP tests, which provide a more explicit view of your haplogroup.

I have done multiple DNA tests, but for different reasons. I did the mtDNA test for Ancestry, and then the Y-DNA test for Family Tree (since Ancestry did not offer Y-DNA testing and I still don't believe they do). The purpose of the Y-DNA was to help with my father's paternal lineage, but it hasn't been of any value, since no other near or distant members have done the Y-DNA test with Family Tree.
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Old 03-07-2018, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Ozark Mountains
634 posts, read 540,190 times
Reputation: 787
Quote:
Originally Posted by SunGrins View Post
I met a woman who has taken several DNA tests and is getting ready to take yet another. She claims that the field is advancing so quickly that you need to keep taking tests to keep up with the science. I must be missing something. Our DNA is what it is and the testing produces raw data that can be analyzed repeatedly as new population studies are incorporated into the mix. My test results should reflect the latest information and be updated if needed...right? My results changed slightly with the original testing results but not much. When I export the results to other company platforms I get some odd differences in the results but I consider those to be related to differing techniques in analysis. Some of the differences can be reconciled and some are way out in left field.


I understand the issue of advanced haplogroup testing but is there any reason to keep getting my DNA autosomal testing done repeatedly...like every year or even more often?
Nothing has changed.
I have taken several tests, Ancestry, FTDNA, Gedmatch, MyHeritage, DNALand, etc., I get basically the same results.
This woman is probably confused and wasting her money.
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Old 03-07-2018, 06:55 PM
 
Location: Cumberland
5,266 posts, read 8,476,099 times
Reputation: 3702
Has anyone ever seen Ancestry "update" your personal DNA results?

When I took the test, they didn't have all the sub-regions they have now. Some family members who have taken the test in the last few months are showing up in these sub-regions. My results are the same, they have not changed.

I know country-level results are highly variable. But, for instance, Ancestry nailed that my grandmother's ancestors were specifically from Germany, not just Europe-West, and from Central-Eastern Scotland, not just "Ireland/Scotland/Wales." They are correct on both accounts. I share the same ancestors, yet my results are not that specific. It certainly could be that I am a few generations further removed from these immigrants and thus more admixed and harder for the test to pin point.

I also wonder if it could be that the test has gotten better in the last year or so.
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Old 03-07-2018, 07:23 PM
 
Location: Colorado (PA at heart)
9,257 posts, read 14,321,192 times
Reputation: 12080
Quote:
Originally Posted by SunGrins View Post
I met a woman who has taken several DNA tests and is getting ready to take yet another. She claims that the field is advancing so quickly that you need to keep taking tests to keep up with the science. I must be missing something. Our DNA is what it is and the testing produces raw data that can be analyzed repeatedly as new population studies are incorporated into the mix.
That's true, but not all companies accept raw data uploads, and companies do periodically update their "chip". The consumer DNA tests used for genealogy only use a portion of your full genome and the chip is what extracts the particular portion they use for these tests. New chips mean slightly different raw data, which can mean slightly different results, but so far I don't think they are too significant. I wouldn't test again at the same company just because of a chip update.

But I would, and have, taken tests at different companies that don't accept raw data uploads. It's not, however, to "keep up with updates" but rather to have access to as many DNA matches as possible, and also out of curiosity sake for the differing ethnicity reports (although that is only an estimate, the science and analysis behind it fascinates me and I find it really interesting to compare).

Quote:
My test results should reflect the latest information and be updated if needed...right?
If the company you tested with updates their ethnicity report, then they update existing tests, yes. If they update their chip, they can not update the raw data unless you test again.

That I know of, AncestryDNA have had one chip update, and one ethnicity update since they made their autosomal DNA test available.

Quote:
I understand the issue of advanced haplogroup testing but is there any reason to keep getting my DNA autosomal testing done repeatedly...like every year or even more often?
No, certainly not at the same company. I mean, maybe if they ever have had so many chip updates in the future that the raw data from when you tested is significantly different, then it might be worth testing again. Or if they ever start including significantly more of your genome than they do now, it might be worth retesting. But that hasn't happened yet - chip updates have only included slight differences.

As for testing at another company that doesn't accept raw data uploads, that's completely up to you. The results will be different, but not necessarily "updated" or more advanced. Granted, LivingDNA is attempting to narrow regions down more specifically than the broad regions of other companies, but as with any ethnicity report, accuracy varies by the individual.
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Old 03-07-2018, 07:36 PM
 
Location: Colorado (PA at heart)
9,257 posts, read 14,321,192 times
Reputation: 12080
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mircea View Post
No, there's absolutely no reason. The woman is either a nutter or grotesquely misinformed.
I wouldn't say there's absolutely no reason, but she clearly is misunderstanding the reasons for doing so.

Quote:
I have done multiple DNA tests, but for different reasons. I did the mtDNA test for Ancestry, and then the Y-DNA test for Family Tree (since Ancestry did not offer Y-DNA testing and I still don't believe they do). The purpose of the Y-DNA was to help with my father's paternal lineage, but it hasn't been of any value, since no other near or distant members have done the Y-DNA test with Family Tree.
Ancestry.com used to offer Y-DNA, and mtDNA - they no longer offer either. They were introduced (2007) and discontinued (2014) at the same time though, so I don't know when you would have seen mtDNA available from them but not Y-DNA.
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Old 03-07-2018, 07:40 PM
 
3,490 posts, read 5,150,507 times
Reputation: 5201
Quote:
Originally Posted by SunGrins View Post
I met a woman who has taken several DNA tests and is getting ready to take yet another. She claims that the field is advancing so quickly that you need to keep taking tests to keep up with the science. I must be missing something. Our DNA is what it is and the testing produces raw data that can be analyzed repeatedly as new population studies are incorporated into the mix. My test results should reflect the latest information and be updated if needed...right? My results changed slightly with the original testing results but not much. When I export the results to other company platforms I get some odd differences in the results but I consider those to be related to differing techniques in analysis. Some of the differences can be reconciled and some are way out in left field.


I understand the issue of advanced haplogroup testing but is there any reason to keep getting my DNA autosomal testing done repeatedly...like every year or even more often?
You may have misunderstood her. You did not specify: is she taking different tests, or the same ones repeatedly?

If the first case, many people like to take different tests and like to compare results between them. There can be large differences in ethnicity results from one company to the other. There is a learning curve with the various features and tools in each test, and it also takes time to keep up with new tools and changes to existing tools. So people who want to "keep up with the science" need to be aware of all the changes and updates in each company. For example, last week MyHeritage implemented a chromosome browser and the ability to use it to triangulate segments between matches. It is a feature that other companies with chromosome browsers do not have, so it takes time to experiment with it and learn how to use it.

They do periodically update the ethnicity results. The last update to MyOrigins (FTDNA) made major changes to my results (and not for the better I might add).

There is no need to take the same test over again. People who have done this say they find very minor differences in their results. This would not help you "keep up with the science." But it's not clear that is what she is doing from what you said.
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Old 03-07-2018, 11:04 PM
 
Location: The High Desert
8,164 posts, read 4,466,899 times
Reputation: 15438
I know that there are frequent comments on the 23andme forum about what “v” chip one is tested with and what is or isn’t available based on your test chip. I’m on a V4 chip but newer people are on a V5 chip. I suppose there are earlier chips. Maybe that’s what she is talking about. I don’t know if other companies have the same issue.
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Old 03-08-2018, 04:22 AM
 
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
10,716 posts, read 9,342,599 times
Reputation: 12614
The question is: how well are the commercial DNA testing companies keeping up with the science? I don't know the answer.
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Old 03-08-2018, 01:27 PM
 
Location: NJ
12,651 posts, read 22,590,152 times
Reputation: 11568
Quote:
Originally Posted by aries63 View Post
You may have misunderstood her. You did not specify: is she taking different tests, or the same ones repeatedly?

If the first case, many people like to take different tests and like to compare results between them. There can be large differences in ethnicity results from one company to the other. There is a learning curve with the various features and tools in each test, and it also takes time to keep up with new tools and changes to existing tools. So people who want to "keep up with the science" need to be aware of all the changes and updates in each company. For example, last week MyHeritage implemented a chromosome browser and the ability to use it to triangulate segments between matches. It is a feature that other companies with chromosome browsers do not have, so it takes time to experiment with it and learn how to use it.

They do periodically update the ethnicity results. The last update to MyOrigins (FTDNA) made major changes to my results (and not for the better I might add).

There is no need to take the same test over again. People who have done this say they find very minor differences in their results. This would not help you "keep up with the science." But it's not clear that is what she is doing from what you said.
Do you have a good site to read about their chromosome browser? I haven't had a chance to check their blog. I've never used one before, want to learn how to use it.
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