Those of us who have taken multiple DNA tests from different DNA companies have often experienced results where all the tests did not agree with each other. As stated in today’s announcement from Ancestry.com:
“While your DNA doesn’t change, the science we use to determine your ethnicity estimates does. Advances in the algorithms used to analyze your DNA and increases in the size and diversity of the reference panel can help you connect to even more regions around the world. As our DNA network grows and science advances, you can expect more comprehensive and precise results.”
My interpretation: if you had your DNA tested a few years ago or even recently by a different DNA testing company, taking a new DNA test today (or re-interpreting your original DNA sample) may result in more comprehensive and precise results.” Of course, this isn’t limited to Ancestry.com or to any other one DNA testing company. All the major DNA testing companies are constantly working to improve the accuracy of their tests.
Today’s announcement from Ancestry.com describes the recent improvements made to that company’s DNA test methodologies. The result should be significantly improved accuracy. It may even shift your reported ancestry to a different place of origin. I suggest you carefully read the last two paragraphs of the following Ancestry.com announcement (You may want to “trade in your lederhosen for a kilt):
Powered by the world’s largest consumer DNA network, millions of family trees linked to AncestryDNA test results, and by increasing our reference panel, Ancestry is releasing our most precise DNA update yet.
While your DNA doesn’t change, the science we use to determine your ethnicity estimates does. Advances in the algorithms used to analyze your DNA and increases in the size and diversity of the reference panel can help you connect to even more regions around the world. As our DNA network grows and science advances, you can expect more comprehensive and precise results.
In our latest update we have been able to break larger regions—like England, Wales & Northwestern Europe; Ireland & Scotland; Italy; China; Japan; the Philippines; Cameroon, Congo & Southern Bantu Peoples; and Eastern Europe & Russia—into smaller, more precise ones. In addition, we have added a new region in Cyprus.
We’ve asked Barry Starr, Ph.D., Director of Scientific Communications at Ancestry, to share his excitement with our newest update. Learn why your latest results could include more Scotland in your ethnicity estimates as Barry explains how the Ancestry science team tirelessly works to deliver ethnicity improvements.
Whether you’re ready to view your updated ethnicity estimates or you’d like to purchase an Ancestry DNA kit, Barry also has some guidance to help you on your journey of discovery in his article, “5 Things Everyone Should Know About Consumer DNA Tests”.
Footnote: the reference “trade in your lederhosen for a kilt)” is from an older Ancestry.com television commercial that describes a surprise experienced when a new and undoubtedly more accurate DNA test provides surprising results.