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Ethnic origin through DNA

  1. May 19, 2003 #1
    Is this possible? If so, must the person being tested have a significant percentage to be identified? I am unsure about one of my great-great grandparents lineage, and would like to know, since census records cannot be found. I have heard about something like this, I believe, something to do with decendants of african slaves trying to find their exact location of origin. From what I read, the tests are accurate enough to pinpoint very specific locations, even villages possibly. This after many, many generations had passed.
    If I remember correctly, they had a database of DNA from modern day africans from the various regions. These were then compared with decendants of slaves in america.
    I know that there is some opposition to these kinds of tests, a fear of racial profiling and such. But if the technology exists, I say why not use it? After all, this is America, more and more people are of mixed ancestry. I would really like to know, and I can't be the only one. Any more information would be appreciated.
     
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  3. May 20, 2003 #2

    iansmith

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  4. May 20, 2003 #3

    Monique

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    There is something called mitochondrial DNA that is passed from mother to child. The mDNA is very stable and can be used to characterize the genetic background of a person.

    Then also the genomic DNA could be used, with some kind of racial fingerprinting is done. My background on it is limited, but to some extend it should be possible to do it.
     
  5. May 22, 2003 #4

    Nah, that seemed like more of a heated ethical debate, not very "science like". All I am curious of is whether its possible to distinguish between the DNA of a pacific islander to that of an east asian. One of my ancestors was an immigrant chinese plantation worker that came to Hawaii in the late 1800s. So there is this deep dark secret in our family that this man had several children with a Hawaiian woman, but when he could afford to pay for passage for his wife he left her. Since the children were still small, the were raised as her own, supposedly.
    Its hard to find records from those days. And if this is true, the records probably would have been changed anyway. These were very racist times, and even my grandmother would never talk about or acnowledge it. I suppose that it doesnt really matter that much, but I will always be curious.
    Thats why I mentioned the article I breifly saw about the descendants of african slave. That was the one and only article of many that I found that did not consist of basically arguments between racists and anti-racists, civil liberties groups and so on. I got tired of looking further. hoping I can find some thing here, "just the facts " so to speak.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 22, 2003
  6. May 22, 2003 #5

    iansmith

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    The link posted by damgo show some link between race and genetics.

    As Monique said usually mitochondrial DNA can be use to trace your mother origin. The Y chromosome and some maker sequence migth be more useful to find your origin. Scientific journals and paper migth have more information on which marker and chromosome are use to determine the ancestor relationship.

    If you want ot test your DNA your going to need some east asian and hawain people DNA in order to comapare your own DNA. It migth also cost a lot of money but some university migth be interrest to take you as subject for an experiment. It cost nothing to ask!
     
  7. May 23, 2003 #6

    selfAdjoint

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  8. May 23, 2003 #7

    kat

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    Family Tree DNA
    You may find the help you need at this site, my experience with them was slightly different then what you are looking for , it was through a massive surname project for my fathers line, they were great and it was well worth the investment. I think it may be worth your time to see what type of assistance they may be able to provide you.


    Best of luck.
    -Kat
     
  9. May 27, 2003 #8
    You mean race. Ethnicity is a cultural term.
     
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