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DNA / Laboratory Services



Ancestry

GE Investigations offers DNA testing and other laboratory services through an accredited DNA laboratory (not a test kit).




A Genetic Odyssey

Most people can name their grandparents and great-grandparents, and some can name their great-great-grandparents. Generations beyond that are often lost to history. While distant family history may have been lost to time, the power of DNA can often help restore these connections. Each individuals DNA is unique and contains a living historical record from present day back to the origins of man and life itself.




1) Paternal Ancestry




Modern Ancestry - The Haplotype Test

Haplotypes


A haplotype is a set of closely linked genetic markers inherited as a unit. Each person is a mosaic of their mother and father resulting from a blending of the DNA they receive from each. An exception to this is the Y chromosome which is male specific passing only from father to son. Any sons a man fathers will also carry this identical Y chromosome, including any minor mutations or polymorphisms. Polymorphisms in a man's Y chromosome are also passed directly on to his sons, and then on to their sons and so on. These polymorphisms are the basis for a person's haplotype and are unique and distinguishing from those of other men. Scientists have determined approximately how often certain kinds of mutations occur and can look for these and determine how closely related any two men are. The more polymorphisms two men share, the more recently they had a common ancestor. The genetic markers in the Y chromosomes of living men contain a historical genetic record of man. Genetic analysis of the Y chromosome can reveal relationships between different groups of men. The Haplotype Test can help locate recent relatives from a single generation up to 25 generations or more, representing a time frame from 0 to approximately 600 years.

The Haplotype Test

The Haplotype test involves extracting and analyzing male DNA for nineteen (19) genealogically relevant genetic markers to determine the haplotype. Subsequently, the haplotype is searched in several world wide DNA databases for possible genetic matches. The laboratory results and search results are summarized in a compressive written report. Additionally, each laboratory report includes a personalized certificate summarizing the DNA results.






Ancient Ancestry - The Male Haplogroup Test

Out of Africa


The fossil record indicates that modern man, Homo sapiens, evolved some 200,000 years ago in East Africa. This physical evidence is supported by recent genetic evidence. Scientists have traced the mitochondrial DNA in all living humans back to a single female, known as Eve, who lived approximately 150,000 years ago. Similarly, genetic markers in all males in the world today can be traced back to a man, dubbed Adam, who lived approximately 60,000 years ago in the plains of East Africa. While Adam and Eve were not the only humans alive at the time, their genetic lineages are the only ones that did not die out over time.

Genetic Record

The scattered remains of distant ancestors have been the tools of the trade for paleoanthropologists and archaeologists for ages. While these ancient bones and artifacts reveal shadows of the past, modern science has revealed a complete record of the prehistoric migrations of man inscribed within human DNA. Overtime, genetic mutations occur within regions of DNA and are subsequently passed from generation to generation, developing different clusters of mutations in regional populations. By evaluating these clusters relative to global populations, the broad migratory movements of man can be determined.

Haplogroups

Each male individual in the world can be placed into one of eighteen genetic classifications or Y haplogroups, based on their DNA composition. Each Y haplogroup is defined by rare DNA mutations on the Y chromosome called SNPs, or single nucleotide polymorphisms. Any two men sharing a particular SNP profile in their DNA inherited it from a common male ancestor who lived many thousands of years ago. The Haplogroup Test helps define individual's ancient origins, during the time period from 10,000 to as much as 60, 000 years ago.

Ancient Ancestry - The Haplogroup Test

In the Haplogroup Test, male DNA is extracted and analyzed for an array specific slow mutating ancestral genetic markers, selected from a panel of approximately one hundred. A Haplogroup is assigned to the sample based on the laboratory results to show how your own family history fits into the human family tree. Each result is accompanied by a comprehensive written report detailing the analytical results and the specific story about your ancient ancestors, including a map of ancient migration routes. Additionally, each laboratory report includes a personalized ancestral certificate summarizing the DNA results and the haplogroup designation.




African Ancestry - Paternal Lineage

According to the latest statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau, there are approximately 39 million Americans claiming some degree African ancestry, representing approximately 13% of the population in the United States.

Into the America

The first African Americans arrived as Indentured Servants via Jamestown Virginia in 1619. From 1619 to around 1640, Africans could earn their freedom by working as laborers for European settlers. In an economy highly dependent on manual labor, the demand for slaves in America escalated rapidly. Slavery grew at such a fast rate that by 1800 there were over 700,000 slaves in the United States. From 1619 to 1850, over 10 million native Africans were enslaved from seven west coast regions of Africa and transplanted in the Americas, with over 35 percent going to Brazil alone.

During this era, historical records of slaves were dismal at best and the process often resulted in the destruction of family and ancestral heritage. Through DNA analysis of select global populations, scientists have devised two genetic classification systems to define the over six billion people in the world today. One system traces male ancestry through the Y chromosome and the other uses mitochondrial DNA to trace maternal lineages. While the genetic landscape has likely changed somewhat in the last 400 years from human migration, genetic analysis can provide some degree of ancestral information lost to history.

Male African Genetic Markers

Each male individual in the world can be placed into one of eighteen genetic classifications or Y haplogroups, based on their DNA composition. Each Y haplogroup is defined by rare DNA mutations on the Y chromosome called SNPs, or single nucleotide polymorphisms. Any two men sharing a particular SNP in their DNA inherited it from a common male ancestor who lived many thousands of years ago.

Haplogroup A

Haplogroup A, first appearing 55,000 years ago, is the oldest of all Y haplogroups and is considered a direct genetic link to early man. It is found almost exclusively in Africa with a wide distribution, but low to moderate frequency. Haplogroup A has been found in the San Bushman, Hadza, Kung, Khwe, Malians, Sudanese and Ethiopians.

Haplogroup B

Another one of the older Y haplogroups, haplogroup B is found almost exclusively in Africa, although it has been detected rarely in Pakistani people. It occurs at low frequency throughout most of Africa, with its highest frequency occurring in Pygmy populations.

Haplogroup D

Haplogroup D first appeared approximately 50,000 years ago and likely accompanied the people of haplogroup C on their great coastal migration through the Southern Arabian Peninsula, India, Southeast Asia and ultimately Australia.

Haplogroup E

Haplogroup E consists of three main branches. Two of the three branches, E1 and E2, are found almost exclusively in Africa, while the third, E3, has also been observed in Europe and in Western Asia where it has been found at frequencies of 25% or less. It is currently believed that the E3a haplogroup migrated south from North Africa with the Bantu agricultural expansion within the last 3,000 years. As a result of its predominance in West Africa, most African-Americans belong to this haplogroup. The E3b haplogroup, on the other hand, is believed to have evolved in the Middle East and migrated into the Mediterranean during the Pleistocene Neolithic expansion. It is currently found in the Mediterranean, Southern Europe, and in Northern and Eastern Africa.

Non African Markers

A recent study of 115 African Americans, conducted by the National Institute of Standards and Technology showed that 23% of the male participants belonged to the R1b haplogroup, a group common among Western Europeans. In the absence of recent known admixture, this is likely attributable to the nature of slave life. Other non-African haplogroups that were detected in this African American population in low frequency include haplogroup I, K and G.




Native American Ancestry - Paternal Lineage

According to the latest US Census, there are approximately 4.3 million Americans claiming some degree of Native American or Alaska native ancestry. Approximately 3.1 million of these individuals claim membership in one of the over 562 federally recognized tribes.

Many Americans seek to verify their Native American ancestry and tribal heritage. To gain membership, a number of tribes set a standard that an individual must have at least one Indian grandparent or one great grandparent, while others require links to members on a tribal membership roster in past generations. Despite the obvious genetic link, in the Indian culture, tribal membership at times can be a question of politics and culture, not biology. One can be considered Native American if one is recognized by a tribe as being a member. Native American ancestry from a genetic perspective does not guarantee tribal membership.

While affirming Native American ancestry does not guarantee tribal membership or special rights, it can serve as valuable evidence in support of a case. In order for Native Americans to be eligible for Bureau of Indian Affairs services, they must be a member of a tribe recognized by the federal government, be greater than 50% Native American belonging to tribes indigenous to the United States or in some instances have 25% or more Native American ancestry. The Aleuts, Eskimos and Indians of Alaska are eligible for BIA services.

Into the Americas

There are several theories regarding the earliest migrations into North America, ranging from 15,000 to 40,000 years ago. The most generally accepted theory of early migration into North and South America is from Asia over the Bering Straits land bridge somewhere between 15,000 and 25,000 years ago. Genetic research provides compelling evidence for multiple colonization events.

Native American Genetic Markers

Through DNA analysis of select global populations, scientists have devised two genetic classification systems to define the over six billion people in the world today. One system traces male ancestry through the Y chromosome and the other uses mitochondrial DNA to trace maternal lineages. Through this classification, scientists have identified select markers in human genes that tend to be found almost exclusively in Native American populations.

Male Native American Genetic Markers

Each male individual in the world can be placed into one of eighteen genetic classifications or Y haplogroups, based on their DNA composition. Each Y haplogroup is defined by rare DNA mutations on the Y chromosome called SNPs, or single nucleotide polymorphisms. Any two men sharing a particular SNP in their DNA inherited it from a common male ancestor who lived many thousands of years ago.

Native Americans can be grouped into two primary Y haplogroups, haplogroup C and Q.

Haplogroup C

Haplogroup C first appeared approximately 50,000 years ago. Since the mutations that define this haplogroup have not been observed in African populations, it is believed that this haplogroup arose somewhere in Asia. This haplogroup defines a great coastal migration of man, tracing an arc along the Southern Arabian Peninsula through India, Southeast Asia and Australia. Later decedents of this group migrated to North Eastern Asia and finally reached North America approximately 6,000 to 8,000 years ago.

Haplogroup C is widely distributed throughout mainland Asia, the South Pacific and occurs at low frequencies within Native American populations. This haplogroup is also found in New Guinea, Australia, Northern Asia and India. Haplogroup C2 is distributed throughout Polynesia, Melanesia, New Guinea, and Indonesia.

The subhaplogroup C3 is thought to have originated in Southeast or Central Asia and then migrated into Northern Asia, and ultimately the Americas.

Haplogroup Q

Haplogroup Q first appeared 15,000 to 20,000 years ago and is believed to have originated in Central Asia and subsequently migrated through Northern Asia into the Americas. This lineage is found in North and Central Asian populations as well as Native Americans and is the major lineage that links Asia and the Americas.

The subhaplogroup Q3 is unique among Native American populations and is estimated to have originated 8,000 to 12,000 years ago during the migration into the Americas. This haplogroup now defines the most widespread lineage in Native Americans. Nearly all people of South America have this haplogroup and the majority of all North American natives.





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