Genome Project

A few years ago, National Geographic Magazine began a study of mitochondrial DNA lines. Mitochondrial DNA is a genetic component traceable through females only with only one mutation every 10,000 years or so. This has nothing to do with genealogy — only the mitochondrial derivation and movement of one’s maternal (mother’s mother’s mother’s etc.) ancestors going back 10,000 to 30,000 years.

Last Christmas, Donna and Lauren gave me a National Geographic genomic kit to study my “roots.”   A few months ago, I chose to trace the genomic origins on my mother’s side.   I vigorously attacked the inside of my cheek with a scraper for about a minute (twice – 8 hours apart) and sent the swabs to National Geographic’s genomic project.   A few weeks ago, I got the results.   Wow!!  My mother’s ancestral line began perhaps 30,000 years ago in East Africa. We are in a subgroup called “Haplogroup K.”   This group migrated from Africa – through the Middle East – and ended up in Central Europe.   One very small line ended up in Sweden.    It is interesting that more than one third of all Ashkenazi Jews (in Central Europe) are of Haplogroup K.   If you would like to look further into this fascinating project, the link to the web site is as follows: http://genographic.nationalgeographic.com/genographic.    The kits cost about $120.00 (which includes the analysis).   You might also Google this genetic study since there are numerous articles about it.