Warburton DNA Project Overhaul

I have posted a number of times about a new DNA testing strategy. I am currently working on an article intended for the Journal of One -Name Studies on this strategy, and the Warburton experiences leading to it. I will also publish it here in due course.

However I have been prompted to to declare it formally by the start of this year’s Family Tree DNA holiday promotion, which is rather disappointing, and the exciting announcement that from January the BigY test may be ordered without first taking an STR test. The promotion is disappointing in that the Y-chromosome element is nearly all STR tests and upgrades.

There is also  a Family Finder autosomal test at $59, and a Full  Mitochondrial Sequence (FMS) test at $169. Also project members will be getting weekly deduction codes on specific tests. I have established a Forum topic to act as a clearing house for anyone seeking a code, or any project member (someone who has previously tested) who receives a code for either the FF or FMS tests.

I am not recommending any of the STR tests, and the lack of a BigY offering has scuppered my plan to seek another test on the Lancashire group. This is probably not surprising as Family Tree DNA seem to be overstretched by an upgrade to all existing BigY results, and I am still awaiting the results of a Cheshire Group BigY that was ordered in the summer.

I am not recommending any of the STR tests because I now believe the objective of Y-chromosome testing is to determine your most recent, shared SNP. This will determine all your previous SNPs, and hence your ancient history. For example if you have the SNP FGC13446 you are part of the Cheshire group and share its Norman ancestry and the story of the King’s Cluster within the U106 haplotree dating back to roughly 3000BC. SNP A11378 would indicate membership of the main Lancashire group which is also part of the U106 haplotree, but arrived in England with the Saxon migrations.

How do you find your most recent, shared SNP? You could take a chance and test for FGC13446 or A11378, as it only costs $18 at YSEQ. However if the test turns out negative you are no wiser. I therefore recommend a cheap STR test  to narrow the search down before a more targeted SNP test. The best STR test I can see is the YSEQ STR-Alpha 18 marker test which costs just $58, compared with $149 for the FTDNA 37 marker test the project was previously using. I am confident this will indicate whether there is a probable match with any previous Warburton test.  It is interesting to note that YSEQ have an exact equivalent for the 37 marker test for $85.

Not all previous Warburton STR results have been followed up with SNP tests, in which case it would be necessary to initiate a SNP testing strategy.

Going forward my Warburton DNA strategy is as follows:

  • Explore whether a candidate needs a test. If a link can be established to a previous result a test might be unnecessary. In the absence of such a link a test would be recommended. I am also keen to test anyone from any clan or family that doesn’t yet have a result, and anyone related to someone with an unmatched result who could help triangulate (or bypass) that result.
  • If a test is needed recommend the YSEQ STR Alpha test.
  • Determine a SNP strategy based on the above result and the candidates objectives.
  • Test those SNPs
  • Continue to extend knowledge of more recent SNPs, particularly to determine how the trees in the larger groups link together. This would involve a combination of BigY tests and SNP panel tests.

I am anxious t test this new strategy so if you believe you are a candidate please contact me.

I have amended the DNA Page and the A Strategy for DNA paper to reflect this change of approach. I’ve also updated my Welcome ppost.

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