Thursday, November 28, 2013

The FDA and 23andMe

For those who are interested in their DNA, the airwaves have been full of news and conjecture this week about a stern letter from the Food and Drug Administration to 23andMe. For a fair and balanced report, see Blaine Bettinger explains the issues rationally and refers to two other blogs for practical advice: and

The bottom line is that DNA testing for genealogy is not in question and neither is testing for health purposes. However, the interpretation of the health-related test results is at issue. The FDA requires proof that such interpretation is valid, and 23andMe has not yet provided this proof. Note that 23andMe is the only company at present that provides direct to consumer (DTC) testing for health-related issues.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Update on FTDNA sale prices

If you order a Family Finder test for $99, you will get a $100 gift certificate from

Holiday Sale at FTDNA

I'm happy to announce this year's holiday sale is underway for a variety of DNA tests and combinations. These are the items that are now on sale until December 31, 2013 with their sale prices:

Product Name Sale Price
Autosomal DNA Transfer $49.00
Comprehensive Genome $457.00
Family Finder + mtFullSequence $268.00
Family Finder + Y-DNA37 $218.00
Family Finder + Y-DNA67 $288.00
mtFullSequence $169.00
mtHVR1toMega $149.00
mtHVR2toMega $139.00
Y-DNA111 $289.00
Y-DNA37 $119.00
Y-DNA37+mtDNAPlus $168.00
Y-DNA37+mtFullSequence $288.00
Y-DNA37+mtFullSequence $288.00
Y-DNA67 $189.00
Y-DNA67 + mtFullSequence $358.00
Y-Refine12to37 $69.00
Y-Refine12to67 $148.00
Y-Refine25to37 $35.00
Y-Refine25to67 $114.00
Y-Refine37to111 $188.00
Y-Refine37to67 $79.00
Y-Refine67to111 $109.00

Saturday, November 9, 2013

New Y-DNA Tests Available

Family Tree DNA has just announced a new 10 million base-pair Y-DNA test using new technology. See this blog for details: Existing customers can order the Big Y test from their own MyFTDNA page for $499 until December 1 when the price will go to $695.

It appears this may replace the need for testing individual SNPs in order to refine one's haplogroup and therefore may help to identify family-specific haplogroups.

In the interest of full disclosure, a new company (FullGenomes) also offers an expanded Y-DNA test that includes even more base pairs but at a much higher price. See the Comparison Chart at Note the new test from FTDNA is not yet in this chart.