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The Latest in Genetic Genealogy and Personal Genomics News

A quick digest of some of the most interesting news and developments in the field:

10 Great Blogs for Genetic Genealogists

I made this list of 10 Great Blogs for blogs.com a few months ago.  It contains 10 blogs that I believe are vital reading for anyone interested in personal genomics, including genetic genealogy.  Here are my picks, but check out the link for my description of each blog:

  1. DNA – Genealem’s Genetic Genealogy
  2. Dienekes’ Anthropology Blog
  3. European Genetics and Anthropology Blog
  4. Eye on DNA
  5. Genetic Future
  6. Genomeboy.com
  7. Megan’s Root World
  8. The Daily Scan
  9. The Personal Genome
  10. The Spittoon, deCODEyou, DNAction

Genetic Genealogists Assist Studies

In addition to the articles published in the Journal of Genetic Genealogy (the Spring 2009 issue was just released), genetic genealogists have often assisted researchers publishing studies in other journals.  This reinforces my suggestion to researchers that they interact with the genetic genealogy community to facilitate research.  For instance, here is a quote from a new article in PLoS ONE examining the Y-DNA Haplogroup G:

The subjects were recruited from a selection of over 500 haplogroup G men available in public genetic-genealogy databases in the fall of 2006. This was especially valuable in the case of a somewhat rare European haplogroup like haplogroup G (about 2–4% of the general population). The selection of hgG men from already SNP typed populations provided a tremendous savings in time and cost for this project. To have found this large of a sample of HgG men without the resource of the genetic genealogy community’s results would have necessitated the SNP typing of approximately 1500 men. This study exemplifies the success obtainable by productive collaboration between genetics researchers and the genetic genealogy community.

YHRD Updates STR Mutation Rates

Via Dienekes’ Anthropology Blog, I’ve learned that YHRD has updated their database of Y-STR mutation rates:

YHRD has updated with new mutation rates for Y-STR loci. This is an invaluable resource, as it pools mutation rates from all published studies to produce an overall rate based on a large sample.

DTC Bioethics

The latest issue of the American Journal of Bioethics contains roughly 20 articles regarding the ethical issues of direct-to-consumer genetic testing.  Most are a commentary on a study of “Social Networkers’ Attitudes Toward Direct-to-Consumer Personal Genome Testing,” and 23andMe wrote an editorial for the issue.  Daniel MacArthur has already written about his brief look through the issue.

Blaine Bettinger

Intellectual property attorney, genealogist, and author of The Genetic Genealogist since 2007

4 Comments

  1. Hi Blaine
    You have been a help and an inspiration to so many in the genetic genealogy community.
    I nominated you and your blog for the “Puckerbrush Award” today.
    You deserve it.
    Kathleen Carrow Ingram

  2. Kathleen, Thank you very much for this honor, I appreciate it greatly! It’s always so gratifying to hear that your hard work has benefited others.

    And congratulations to you for receiving the award yourself! I only interacted with Janice of Cow Hampshire a few times, but it was always evident that she was a great person and a devoted genealogist. Thank you again.

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