The Indigenous DNA database allows you to match your Y-DNA to a global panel of ethnic groups. Since your Y-DNA is inherited along your paternal lineage, this database allows you to trace the ancestry of your paternal line (father’s, father’s, father’s…. line).
Let’s go over how to use the Indigenous Y-DNA database.
Step 1: After logging in to your control panel, mouse over the DNA Ancestry tab, then click "DNA Reunion".
Step 2: From the DNA Reunion main page, click "mtDNA Search" or "Y-DNA Search" tab.
Step 3: A list of all of the people in your family tree that have been tested will appear. Next to the name of each individual, the ancestral line which will be uncovered is shown. Select the line that you would like to trace and click “Proceed”.
Step 4: The total number of Y-DNA markers that you have tested will appear. Select the number of markers that you want to use for comparison.
For Keeners: Why is this necessary? The indigenous DNA database contains indigenous DNA marker data from many different research labs around the world. The markers tested by different research labs are often not exactly the same markers i.e. the tested markers may not overlap. Furthermore, the total number of markers which are tested by each research lab is often different: some laboratories may test more markers, and others may test less. The inconsistency in data collection between different research labs from around the world makes it difficult for you to compare your DNA to the results of multiple research groups at the same time. While you may have tested 44 markers, the indigenous studies may have examined less markers or different markers from the ones that you have tested. For example, research Laboratory A might only test 12 markers for the indigenous samples that they collect while research Laboratory B might test 14 markers, however, only 7 out of the 14 markers from Laboratory A are the same as the markers tested by laboratory A. In this hypothetical situation, the overlapping markers to be compared between the two labs must be 7 or less. This is the reason why even if you have tested 44 markers, you would select only a portion of them for comparison to the indigenous DNA database. The benefit of testing more markers (i.e. 44 markers instead of 20) is that the system will have a larger pool of DNA markers to choose from when doing comparisons, and as a result, you will be able to compare to more ethnic groups.
Regardless of the number of markers that you have tested, we recommend starting your search with 8 markers. You can always increase or decrease the number of markers depending on the results that you obtain from 8. Remember, the less markers that you use for comparison, the weaker your results, but the more ethnic groups you will be able compare to. When you increase the number of markers that you use for searching, less ethnic groups will qualify for comparison, but the results will be much stronger and more precise.
Step 5: Based on the markers that you have tested and how many of them you want to use for comparison, a list of different groups of qualifying ethnic populations will be generated. Select the group that you would like to use for comparison and click “Run Analysis”.
For keeners: Interested in knowing a little more about the algorithm used by the system to generate this list? This list is automatically generated based on a number of factors: the number of markers that you would like to use for comparison, the types of markers that you have tested, and the number and types of markers from each individual research group in the entire indigenous DNA database. The system scans each of the DNA markers that you have tested, compares them to the DNA markers from each of the different research groups in the database to find “overlapping markers”, and then determines the best sets of markers which overlap the greatest number of populations in the indigenous DNA database (ie. from all the markers that you have tested, the system selects the sets of markers which allows you to compare to the greatest number of populations).
Step 6: The result of your search is displayed as a graph which indicates the closest match to your ancestry. The RMI (relative match index) shows how closely you match each ethnic group or region. Additional information about interpretation of these results can be found in the FAQ section of DNA Clans.
Please remember that the matches are based upon the most current data in the indigenous database today. Researchers from around the world continue to sample the DNA from new indigenous groups. As new data and populations become available, they will automatically be included in the indigenous DNA database. As the sciences continues, your journey will continue, allowing you to dig deeper into your ancestral origins and obtain more and more precise matches. Use of the Indigenous DNA database is free, so check back often and become part of this exciting and ever evolving journey of research and discovery.