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Saturday, November 3, 2012


About a month ago, I received my Autosomal DNA results from a test at I was shocked! I always knew that I had family from the British Isles and possibly some Native American ancestry, but neither showed up in my DNA.  According to my DNA results, my genetic ethnicity revealed 56% Central European, 42% Scandinavian, and 2% uncertain.  Was I switched at birth? If so, have I been researching families that were not mine?

A call to my mother did not calm me as she stated that the second time that I was brought to her in the hospital, she told the nurses that they brought her the wrong baby. 

Looking at the family trees of my possible matches did not help as names such as Zambito, Vizzi, Ottenhausen and Brinkmeier kept popping up and did not match my simple family names of Bryan, Regan, Smith, Davis, and Jones.

Finally, Sharon, my second-cousin-once-removed, sent me an e-mail to say that her results were in and that Ancestry matched us as possible third cousins or second-cousins-once-removed.  That was a relief. I am who I thought I was, but I still did not understand my results. 

My brother submitted a Y-DNA test to help with our Bryan family several years ago. Only males can take this test. It compares him to other Bryans and hopefully will help us find a connection to related Bryan families.  The test that I took, the Autosomal DNA, is a test that anyone can take. It has been described as a test that gives a broader picture of your complete tree rather than the Y-DNA test which traces only one line.

However, after much reading and research, I learned that Autosomal DNA doesn't actually give a picture of your "complete  tree."  It gives you a complete picture of the DNA that you inherited from your parents.  

I watched You’ve Received Your AncestryDNA Results. Now What?a video from Ancestry's Crista Cowan, and she explained how we inherit our DNA by using fruit. It made so much sense! I am going to try to explain it with fruit and vegetables, but for the best explanation, watch the video at 

Just say that  my mother's DNA has apples and oranges from her father and grapes and blueberries from her mother.

My father's DNA has peas and carrots from his father and corn and eggplant from his mother.

So, I get half of my mother's DNA (grapes and apples) and half of my fathers DNA (peas and carrots).  I have DNA from my mother's mother and her father; however, my father only passed on DNA from his father's side.  So my Autosomal DNA results will not include my father's mother's DNA.

My brother's DNA could be completely different than mine if he inherited oranges and blueberries from our mother and corn and eggplant from our father.

This tells me that if I want to know more about my background through Autosomal DNA, more family members will need to submit their DNA.  AND, just an FYI to my mother and brother - your tests have been ordered.


© 2012

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1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing your blog. Very interesting! I love reading about people's journey in the realm of genealogy.