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Genetic distance

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Genetic distance is the term used to describe the number of differences or mutations between two sets of Y-chromosome DNA or mitochondrial DNA test results. A genetic distance of zero means that there are no differences in the two results and there is an exact match.[1]

For autosomal DNA comparisons genetic distance relates to the size of a shared DNA segment. The genetic distance is then the length of the segment in centiMorgans.[1]


See also the following Family Tree DNA FAQs in the FTDNA Learning Center:

Note that as of 12 December 2012 Family Tree DNA changed the way that they calculated genetic distance for palindromic STR markers and null allele values. This had the effect of changing the degree of matching for some people.

Genebase Learning Center

Blog posts

Further reading

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 Definition of genetic distance Family Tree DNA Learning Center