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What is Genetic Genealogy?

Genetic Genealogy - Double Helix

Genetic genealogy is a branch of the booming consumer genomics industry. Genomics has been an integral part of biomedicine for decades but has recently garnered more attention because of its applications for genetic relatedness, ancestry, personalized medicine, diagnostics, and medicine. 

According to the International Society of Genetic Genealogy (ISOGG), genetic genealogy is “the use of DNA testing in combination with traditional genealogical and historical records.”

Simply put, genetic genealogy, also called genetic ancestry testing, explores variations of DNA to discover links between families, individuals, and populations to establish connections.

Here at Origins Genealogy, we employ genetic genealogy methods to help customers discover their biological families, learn about distant relatives, and uncover family stories that would be impossible to unearth any other way.

Different From “Regular” Genealogy

A genetic genealogy investigation differs from traditional ancestry research in that it combines DNA testing in conjunction with genealogical and historical records to identify a family relationship. Genetic genealogy has experienced growth in the last decade as accessibility to testing has improved, along with affordability.

How Genetic Genealogy Helps Pinpoint Genetic Matches

Genetic genealogy utilizes information from four different forms of data collection including Y chromosome testing, mitochondrial DNA testing, single nucleotide polymorphism DNA testing, and autosomal DNA testing to look for shared patterns between individuals and families. 

The skilled genealogists at Origins have access to genetic ancestry testing tools and can help clients find biological parents, find an adopted sibling, find a birth mother, or find a biological father by merging the power of DNA science with sharp genealogical research to validate connections. 

How Does the Genealogical DNA Test Work?

Currently, there are several companies offering genetic genealogy testing in the United States. Ancestry.com is one of the most popular, offering autosomal testing that leverages software algorithms to match genealogical information with potential relatives.

Origins Genealogy uses the AncestryDNA® test because Ancestry.com—the world’s most extensive genetic genealogy database—won’t accept other DNA test results.

Genetic Genealogy—DNA activation kit from Ancestry.com
 DNA Activation Kit from Ancestry.com

However, we do upload our customers’ AncestryDNA® results to four other genetic genealogy databases: MyHeritage, Genomelink, GEDMatch, and FamilyTreeDNA. 

Using autosomal testing, AncestryDNA® can audit over 700,000 locations in the client’s DNA, all with the saliva sample submitted by the client. 

(See our recent comparison of 23andMe vs Ancestry DNA test kits.)

Genetic Testing is Quick and Easy

To obtain genealogical DNA testing results you order a kit and follow the instructions in the kit. The Ancestry kit uses a saliva test so no blood draws are necessary and comes with a prepaid return mailer so you can get your DNA testing results quickly and seamlessly. 

DNA is processed in the lab and within six to eight weeks you are emailed instructions on how to access the information. The experts at Origins will analyze your results and compare your genome to those in the major genetic genealogy databases.

Origins uses your autosomal DNA profile to help our customers find genetic relatives, whether they’re searching for a birth father, an adopted sibling, or distant relatives.

Genetic Privacy and Genealogy

Genealogical DNA testing is both easy and safe for all those involved, so you can put any privacy concerns to rest.

The passing of the 2008 Genetic Information and Non-Discrimination Act (GINA) ensures that your DNA information obtained for you is protected and can’t be used against the recipient in any way.

DNA results produced by genetic genealogy testing centers are limited to the person being tested and those to whom they give specific permission. 

Benefits of Genealogical Testing

Genetic genealogy offers far-reaching benefits that often surpass initial expectations. Genetic ancestry testing can be life changing because it helps clients to:

  • Connect to your birth family
  • Learn about a family’s history
  • Discover the region ancestors came from
  • Learn about ancestors’ physical and mental traits
  • Learn about ancestors’ health history
  • Find living relatives
  • Help relatives find you
  • Build your family tree
  • Make informed health decisions
  • Connect to your extended family

How We Find Biological Parents

Never have we had the resources and technology we have today for finding biological parents. DNA testing, coupled with the skills of our professional genealogists, makes what may seem like an insurmountable process possible.  

With your DNA testing data Origins Genealogy can use online databases to view all DNA matches. Using the information provided from your genetic matches, we can trace common ancestors and start your descendancy research.

Genetic Genealogy—DNA charting to show degrees of genetic relatedness

Locating a common ancestor allows you to systematically search, generation by generation, to discover people who could be your parent. 

Discovering birth parents through Origins Genealogy

DNA testing is a powerful tool for adoptees to apply when searching for birth parents. After you receive your DNA testing results, Origins can review your list of matches and begin the process of locating your birth parents. 

When reviewing the people on your match list in a genetic database, Origins pays special attention to the centimorgan amount.

Gentic genealogy—Centimorgan range showing 2nd cousin
Genetic genealogy—Centimorgan range showing 2nd cousin

This figure is used to measure your genetics, per several DNA segments that you match. The larger the centimorgan amount, the greater the genetic relatedness.

(Read our recent article about what to do when DNA doesn’t match Dad)

Origins Birth Parent Liason Service

Once you have identified who your birth parents are you may wish to employ a liaison to establish that first contact. Origins knows how to contact your biological parents discreetly and with tact to arrange your first meeting with them. 

How We Find Adopted Siblings

Finding a biological sister or brother who was adopted has a greater likelihood of success when leveraging the power of genetic genealogy.

Genetic technologies improve accuracy and efficiency to help find adopted siblings while saving you valuable time and money.

Using DNA matching, Origins can compare profiles with millions of markers in genetic genealogy databases to zero-in on DNA that matches yours. Each test reveals biological relatives from anywhere in your family tree. 

Genetic genealogy services - Origins Genealogy

Why Choose Origins for Genealogy Services?

At the core of sincere genealogical research is the goal to establish meaningful connections to our past, our present, and our future. Connections to our origins.

Using state-of-the-art DNA technology, online databases, and a committed, experienced team, Origins works tirelessly to get you the answers you need about your birth family and your ancestors.  

Whether you’re an adoptive parent wanting to help your child connect to his or her origins, an adult adoptee yourself wanting to connect with your biological father,  or just want to know more about your genetic heritage, Origins Genealogy can help.

Partnering with Origins gives you immediate access to time-saving genetic genealogy resources with affordable, quality results. Our team has decades of involvement in DNA analysis and family history research all over the globe. 

After all, despite the wealth of genealogy websites available for do-it-yourselfers, a professional genetic genealogy company like Origins has access to resources that the average person doesn’t. Plus, our genetic genealogy researchers have extensive experience.

Professional Genealogy Services

Origins offers several options for genetic genealogy services to meet your needs and budgets. Each package includes the following:

  • Comprehensive research and analysis
  • In-depth reports
  • Copies of pertinent documents
  • Copies of original records
  • Premium-quality binder
  • Free shipping
  • Affordable payment options
  • Thank-you gift from origins

Genetic genealogists use DNA as a tool to aid genealogical research. But DNA testing can also offer some insight into one’s deep ancestry. Origins Genealogy helps answer questions you didn’t even know you had. 

Contact Origins today to learn more about how you can benefit from genetic ancestry testing and to request a free case review. Origins is a leading professional genealogy company that can fast-track your journey of discovery. It’s time to bring your family history to life!

Genetic genealogy services FAQ

Genetic genealogy is the use of DNA testing to determine links between people, uncover genetic matches, and learn about one’s ancestors. As testing has become more accessible and economical, the field of genetic genealogy has become more popular in recent years.

Ancestry and 23andMe are two of the most accurate genetic tests on the market today. We recently compared Ancestry and 23andMe and came to the conclusion that Ancestry DNA tests are better option for genealogical research, while 23andMe DNA tests are for health reasons.

Genetic genealogy differs from traditional genealogy, or ancestry research, in that it uses DNA testing, as well as genealogical and historical sources, to determine a familial link.

If we’re not 100% confident we can find your birth parents in your country of origin, we’ll tell you so.

Yes, Origins Genealogy is a professional genealogy firm that can do all your genealogical research for you, including finding original documentation, compiling, and even arranging a heritage tour to your ancestral homeland if you like!

The rates of genetic genealogists vary from one genealogy company to another. Within Origins professional genealogy services page, you can see our packages and prices.

When you run into a serious roadblock in your genetic genealogy research, such as not understanding what to do next following a DNA test, it’s time to seek professional assistance from a genealogist. You may save time and money by using Origins Genealogy to identify your birth parents or relatives.

We actually inherit equal DNA from each parents whether we are born male or female. The halves we get are made up of random combinations of their DNA, which is formed up of random combinations of their ancestors’ DNA. So, 50% of your DNA is from your biological father, and 50% from your biological mother.

There are different types of DNA tests. For example, autosomal, Y-chromosome, and mitochondrial. The autosomal DNA test from Ancestry, which Origins Genealogy uses to locate birth parents and other biological family members, “surveys a person’s entire genome at over 700,000 locations. It covers both the maternal and paternal sides of the family tree, so it covers all lineages.” (Source: https://www.ancestry.com/dna/en/legal/us/faq)

Your findings will indicate both your parents’ ancestry, but it will be blended, so you won’t be able to distinguish which parent contributed which nation or DNA result.

23andme offers ancestry testing for maternal and/or paternal-specific ancestry (mtDNA and YDNA, respectively).

AncestryDNA findings can show your paternal lineage in a roundabout way. If your father has not taken an AncestryDNA DNA test, the website will not be able to tell you who your father is. Even so, based on your closest DNA matches, you might be able to figure out who your biological father is. A professional genealogy service such as Origins can help analyze your DNA matches. Supplementing with archival records and other research, we have a high success rate finding biological fathers for our customers.

Yes, AncestryDNA testing are 99% accurate. They hold the world’s most comprehensive genetic genealogy database and will only accept their own DNA test results.

Apart from identifying your biological parents, genetic testing can also aid in the detection of hereditary disorders such as obesity, psoriasis, bipolar disorder, parkinson’s disease, breast and ovarian cancer, and others. If you want to do DNA testing for health reasons, we highly recommend 23andMe.

If you can’t find local records, translate documents into a foreign language, or interpret DNA results, it’s a good idea to contact a genealogist. Even if you have considerable genealogy research experience, hiring a genealogist is a good idea if you just don’t have the time or money to complete your assignment.

An autosomal DNA is better for ruling out rather than demonstrating Native American descent. For family historians working on Native American research, the best free genealogy website would be Access Genealogy.

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