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Surname DNA projects

From ISOGG Wiki

Surname DNA projects are genetic genealogy projects which use genealogical DNA tests to trace male lineages. Because surnames are passed down from father to son in many cultures, and the Y chromosome is passed from father to son with a predictable rate of mutation, people with the same surname can use genealogical DNA testing to determine if they share a genealogical common ancestor.

When two males share a surname, a test of their Y-chromosome markers will determine either that they are not related, or that they are related. If they are related, the number of markers tested and the number of matches at those markers determines the range of generations until their most recent common ancestor (MRCA). If the two tests match on 37/37 markers, there is a 50% probability that the MRCA was fewer than five generations ago and a 90% probability that the MRCA was fewer than 17 generations ago.

Note: Some current Surname DNA Projects by ISOGG members are listed to the right.

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Testing companies

Surname projects are best run with a testing company which provides project management facilities such as a courtesy website. Family Tree DNA is now the only company which provides project management tools and the vast majority of surname projects are now hosted at Family Tree DNA> Family Tree DNA offers a discount for kits ordered through a surname project. Surname project facilities were previously provided by the British-based company DNA Heritage. DNA Heritage was acquired by Family Tree DNA in April 2011, and project members were given the option of transferring their results to the FTDNA database free of charge. AncestryDNA previously offered Y-DNA tests and provided a My Groups feature. They retired their Y-DNA tests in June 2014 and My Groups was discontinued.

List of surname DNA projects

There are over 9000 surname projects at Family Tree DNA run by volunteer project administrators. You can search for surnames from the FTDNA home page or scroll through the alphabetical listings. The FTDNA surname projects can also be searched via the alphabetical project lists on the World Families Network website.

World Families provides a list of DNA projects with 50+ members. Note that this listing also includes haplogroup projects and geographical DNA projects.

Cyndi's List provides a partial listing of Surname DNA studies and projects.

The following is a partial list of surname projects run by ISOGG members. ISOGG members are encouraged to create their own free ISOGG Wiki page(s) to advertise their project(s).

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  • (No current web link known) Meates Family Association DNA Project - established 2001 Administrator: Susan C Meates
  • Mouchet Surname Project established Jun 2016 Administrator: George Mouchet
  • Muckian DNA Project established Jun 2007 Administrator: Michael L. Muckian
  • Mugford Surname DNA Project established July 2008 Administrator: Martin H. Potter
  • Mulvihill DNA Project established 2005 Administrator: James M. Mulvihill

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Further reading

See also