My maternal line is: H1
My paternal line is: R1b1a2a1a1c1a U106
— The GENO test advanced my YDNA ISOGG definition from R1b1a2a1a1a (U106) to R1b1a2a1a1c1a U106/R-Z307
GENO 2.0, by National Geographic, is different from many other DNA tests in that it provides a deep look back in time. Its objective is to create an anthropological view of our lives, not a genealogic view … although you can upload the results to FamilyTreeDNA.com where it can be used for some genealogy purposes.
Quick Review of GENO 2.0:
For women, the mtDNA test given by FamilyTreeDNA is considered superior in almost every way if your intent is to use the results for genealogy.
For men, the test results are roughly equivalent to taking FamilyTreeDNA’s 111 marker test — the only problem being that almost no one takes the 111 marker test so you very rarely have any results to compare your results against.
For both men and women, the value of taking the GENO 2.0 test is 1) it heavily tests for hundreds and thousands of known SNPs and confirms their existence in your DNA. Just testing for one SNP normally costs $39, so GENO 2.0 is an incredible bargain if you are a serious genetic genealogist; and 2) the GENO 2.0 test provides an interesting geolocational timeline of both maternal and paternal haplogroup evolution back to the earliest identifiable SNP within your DNA … which in my case was 180,000 years in the past for my maternal line.
If your primary interest is making genealogical connections then GENO 2.0 is not the best test for you.
GENO 2.0 outlines a person’s evolution according to their genetic changes (markers) across time. These markers are called SNPs (pronounced snip or plural snips // Single Nucleotide – Polymorphism). A newly evolved SNP is unique to an individual at a single instance of time, although similar SNPs with similar origins can come into being. EXAMPLE: During a plague or outbreak of disease, an ancestor developed a unique biological resistance which recorded itself within a person’s DNA and which provides some protection for future generations against that same kind of disease or plague. That would be a SNP that every descendent would then inherit … and even though multiple people in the same plague may develop similar immunity the SNPs passed on to their descendents would always be slightly different and thus trackable across time.
We carry along these markers from generation to generation, but there was a specific time in the past when these markers came into being. Identify the marker and you may be able to identify a point-in-time from the past as to when and where the SNP was created.
We pass along these markers to our children, leaving a forensic trail that allows science to look backwards in time. Not all SNPs are known as to their meaning, but they do act to correlate the evolution of related individuals across time and space.
My Maternal Lineage
My mother’s direct maternal line derives from a direct ancestor born in East Africa about 180,000 years ago. From East Africa, this lineage spread across northeastern Africa. Between 60-70,0000 years ago my maternal line moved then from Africa and settled in the eastern Mediterranean region (the area from modern Turkey to the modern Caucasus region). Western migration into Europe began about 22-30,000 years ago. This maternal line (H1 which evolved from H, HV, R0, R, N and L3) slowly spread across western Europe (Germany, Alps/Tyrolia, British Isles) as the last ice age continued its retreat.
Below is the evolution of my DNA maternal tree.
My Paternal Timeline
My paternal line has genetic markers tracking back approximately 140,000 years. My family’s modern ancestry originated in the British Isles. However the path taken out of Africa to reach the British Isles took a much more scenic route than did my mother’s maternal line.
Both my maternal and paternal family lines originated in the British Isles before arriving in North America during the 1600s.
Below is the evolution of my DNA paternal tree.
At some time more than 30,000 years ago there was a Neanderthal grandparent, or two, introduced into the family tree. However, there is a 0.0 percent trace of Denisovan DNA.
The Denisovans are a fairly recently identified predecessor line to modern humans. It is generally thought that they lived and thrived mostly in southeast Asia and central Siberia, but Denisovans have been confirmed as having been present in southwest Europe in Spain about 400,000 years ago.
You are welcome to add to or to correct this story by contacting: Bill Golden, Norfolk1956@gmail.com
BTW – I look forward to sharing your stories, photos and in-search-of quests. Contact me at the email address above.