Thursday, August 07, 2008

DNA Analysis

Results of DNA Testing

As a result of our analysis we opted to use FamilyTreeDNA for our DNA testing. It tooks a few weeks to turn around the results but that is probably to be expected. The results of my grandpa's, Willard Darrell Wakefield, DNA tests were as follows:

The testing has confirmed our beliefs that the Wakefield line originated in Western Europe. My grandpa is a member of the R1b1 haplogroup. A Google search for the R1b1 group produced the following information from, Wikipedia, and The Cheek Family site:

These map clearly show us that the R1b1 haplogroup is concentrated in Western Europe.

Haplogroup R1b1 (M343, P25) (Western Europeans)

This is the most common Y-DNA haplogroup in western Europe. The frequency of R1b1 is highest along the Atlantic coast of Europe (up to 90% of Welsh, Irish, and Basque populations, for example), and declines as you move east. Haplogroup R1b1 probably originated in a group of people who "wintered" in what is now Spain during the last Ice Age and then moved north when the glaciers melted 10,000 to 12,000 years ago. The ancestors of R1b1 were probably the Paleolithic people of western Europe, famous for their cave paintings in Lascaux, France and other archeological sites.

Additional facts about the R1b1 haplogroup:

Haplogroup R1b1 is also the most common Y-DNA haplogroup in the white U.S. population. As of May 2008, nearly 70% of the Y-DNA results submitted to the Ybase website were Haplogroup R1b, while only 17% were Haplogroup I and 7% were Haplogroup R1a. A 2005 study found that 58% of white American males are in Haplogroup R1b.

R1b1 Haplogroup R1b is the most common haplogroup in European populations. It is believed to have expanded throughout Europe as humans re-colonized after the last glacial maximum 10-12 thousand years ago. This lineage is also the haplogroup containing the Atlantic modal haplotype. had the following information on the R1b haplogroup:

Paternal Ancient Ancestry Haplogroup R1b first arrived first arrived in Europe from West Asia during the Upper Paleolithic period (35,000-40,000 years ago) at the beginning of the Aurignacian culture. This culture is one of the first within Europe to leave cave art, and their stone tools were more refined than previous periods. The Périgordian culture is also thought by some to have existed at this time.

As the last ice age began, it became necessary to move down to below the tree line to hunt game. At its peak, the ice shelf within Europe extended down as far as southern Ireland, the middle of England and across northern Germany. Scandinavia was entirely covered. The sea ice pack extended as far as northern Spain, and tundra covered much of continental Europe. The tree line at the height of the ice age extended as far south as southern France, northern Italy, the northern Balkans and across the Black Sea.

People with Haplogroup R1 Y-chromosomes retreated to below these regions where they established themselves. As the ice age ended and the fauna and flora were able to move northward again, people in R1b also migrated north. Haplogroup R1 appears in about 50% of the total European population whereas R1b remains by far the most common haplogroup in western Europe (Spain, Portugal, France, UK and Ireland). R1b3, one of the most successful clades, has its origins about 11,800 years ago. Within the British Isles, a genetic pattern called the Atlantic Modal Haplotype (AMH) features greatly among the Irish and Welsh. Some researchers consider this haplotype to be representative of the early Celtic migrations. Haplogroup R1b is prevalent within South America because of the influx of Iberian Y chromosomes to the continent over the last 500 years.

DNA Testing Sites

The following sites have our DNA results included in the testing pool: Ancestry, YBase, FamilyTreeDNA, and YSearch.

Analysis of DNA Testing Sites

To determine which company we wanted to use for our DNA testing an analysis of the companies was performed. The following is an overview of that process:

Genealogy and DNA Articles

Bried Overview of DNA Usage for Genealogical Research

Results of Analysis. Includes company analysis and recommendations.

Future Enhancements

Future additions to our DNA testing will include connections we have made through DNA testing, results of additional testing that has been ordered that could further refine the haplogroup of my grandpa, and information on my grandma's DNA results.


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