DNA Testing Services:
Accessing the data in your genes

(filename: - shewoo/famhis/dna/testserv.htm)

First catch your rabbit....

If you are trying to trace your family history, there is information here about something that can help you...

This page is a support page for an online directory which could help people with information on their mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) find other people with the same mtDNA, and hence perhaps a common maternal ancestor.

You will find recommendations here about whether and how you get your DNA... both your Y-DNA and your mtDNA... tested in the first place, so that you can proceed down the road of discovering your genealogy via the "codes" contained in your DNA. Those codes can help you find living people with whom you share patrilinial ancestors, and living people with whom you share matrilineal ancestors. Who knows? Maybe one of those people has already traced your family tree back further than you have? Or maybe you can "be a hero", and tell them their family history? But first you have to find each other!

Getting Tested

Do it! It is easy; it is safe... medically and otherwise. It is a little bit expensive still, but once you've done it, every time you fetch email, you get the "buzz" of knowing that "today could be the day..."!

It took me years to overcome certain reservations, but I finally sent my DNA to FamilyTreeDNA, and have never had regrets. As I type this, their labs are analyzing new submissions from new participants. Will one of them be a "match" to my DNA???

One catch...

The people at FTDNA are very conscious of their responsibility to keep your DNA data confidential. They won't tell "just anyone" what their tests show.

If you keep the data "a secret", it won't do you much good. FTDNA (and others) have systems which arrange for you and you "twin" to get emails if your DNA matches. But you have to opt IN to this program. You have to sign a release telling FTDNA that you are willing for that email to be sent. Yes, "strangers" will be given your eddress... but not very many strangers.

What? Me Worry? Family history research by DNA concerns.

Concerned about "issues" surrounding the submission of DNA samples? So was I. Any time you contemplate mixing personal information and the internet, Be Careful.

However, eventually I came to believe that FamilyTreeDNA handles those issues well. I worried about three things...

Civil liberties issues- FamilyTree, last time I checked... before Oct 2010, admittedly, they said they'd not yet been forced to hand over an data.

Getting medical insurance issues- With more and more insurers requiring a pre-insurance medical, including blood draw, we've "lost" this one already.

Being "pestered" by other FamilyTree participants- I've been a member, in the "contact me if we have similar DNA" system for years. No problems yet... the system protects your email address from widespread "visibility".

HOWEVER... for a more thorough analysis of the issues, I recommend They refrain from ranting. I concede that some of their points are perfectly valid. The only way to live a life with no risk is to do nothing. My friends tell me I am paranoid. In order to have the benefits of geneaology-by-DNA, I decided to accept the Pandora's box risks.

I like the It's well organized, which I admire even if I'm not successful at achieving it. It has an easily found section about using DNA in your family history research.

See my main family history hunt page for offers to help you defray the cost of DNA testing.

My family history page can also be accessed via, if you want a shorthand way to cite it.

Ad from page's editor: Yes.. I do enjoy compiling these things for you. I hope they are helpful. However... this doesn't pay my bills!!! Sheepdog Software (tm) is supposed to help do that, so if you found this stuff useful, (and you run a Windows or MS-DOS PC) please visit my freeware and shareware page, download something, and circulate it for me? Links on your page to this page would also be appreciated!
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