Newest Findings: Four and half years later

There is so much that has happened in the last month, but in this post I will cut to the chase. Although this specifically addresses Group B it shows what is possible with Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) of the Y chromosome for all of our groups. (Both Group B and Group C have NGS testing!)

A long time ago, 20,000 years more or less, the mutation M343 occurred as a man fathered a son and a transcription error occurred on the Y chromosome.  This son was the ancestor of the most predominate Haplogroup in Northern Europe R1b carried by tens of millions of men today (including all in our project except Group E). We can use this and mutations that happened after M343 to literally trace our ancestry back through time. Although I talk about lots of esoteric technical stuff the essence is that for each man alive today, we will be able to trace the paths of his ancestors through the mutations he carries.  Just three years ago this was not possible. When we tested  the price was $1250. It is now on sale through the end of the month for $700. And there are less expensive options in the works. It is always the early adopters that pay the highest price but build the framework on which all else happens. We were there!

You should all be rightfully proud of your participation in this modest surname project which collaboratively has accomplished so much. It shows what is possible as citizen scientists, that will never be done by experts because our interest is too parochial for them. Each surname or haplogroup project becomes expert in their little area of the Y tree. No researcher has the time, resources or interest in our branchlets of the Y tree.

So now to the latest. When Group B first got its Elite Y results (of the full Y chromosome) we had one match with an anonymous man from the “1,000 genomes project” who had 3 out of 4 grandparents born in Mexico. Then we got a match with a DOOTZ from Romania whose family goes back there to the 12th C. It was rumored that his family were Transylvania Saxons. He shared the two SNPS that came after L2: FGC22501 and FGC22538 that were both discovered in our group B sample along with over 40 others.

Our next big break was in matching a US tester TRIPP who not only shared FGC22501 and FGC22538 but 6 other downstream SNPS. This TRIPP was from Lincolnshire, England originally. And our biggest breakthrough was our latest match VERBEECK from Belgium. Not only did he match all the SNPS we share with TRIPP but he shares my passion for history, linguistics and archaeology. So this is the Phylogenetic Tree for the GROUP B. So at the level of FGC22501 there are 9 men and our WHEATONS who have tested positive. DOOTZ, VERBEECK, TRIPP, KIDD and WHIFFING all tested with FTDNA’s Big Y test which gets out 40-60% of the SNPS on the Y. The Y Elite gets 99%. Working together I believe we have already made significant progress in drafting the most likely scenarios to our most recent common ancestor (MRCA).

FGC22501 Phylogenetic Tree

On the above tree note that Only TRIPP, VEERBECK and WHEATON share the lowest levels of SNPS (the most recent). TRIPP and VERBEECK are only a STR Genetic Distance (GD) of -10 at 67 markers (57 of 67 markers match). Whereas we are about -20 with VERBEECK and about -18 with TRIPP. The map below is a draft (or starting point) in guestimating the migration patterns of the individuals above. The circles or ovals denote the likely location that the SNP occurred and its early spread. The arrows are “likely” migrations. The dates are give or take about 500 years. The point for U152 is the ONLY precise data point where the SNP U152 was extracted from a skeleton from the Bell Beaker culture from c. 2200 BCE  from Osterhofen-Altenmarkt, Germany ( known as RISE563).

Map Draft FGC22501

A draft Map of the Migration pattern of various branches of FGC22501

It is believed that the Proto-Indo-European (PIE) Languages spread from the Eurasian (Russian) Steppes into Eastern and then Western Europe and with them came various Y branches of DNA. You might note Willem II of Holland on this map. This is educated conjecture at this point that he may have shared some of these SNPS as his STR profile (at 12 markers) is very similar to VERBEECK and one other suspected FGC22501. We are still in the very early stages of finding matches and mapping there migration.

I will be posting more as time permits and although I have shared it with many of the Group B folks I hope everyone will find it of some interest. I have often said that our DNA is the encyclopedia of where we came from and we just happen to be living at a time where reading that encyclopedia is possible. Just a few years ago Neanderthals were some ancient Homo species which we maligned and thought never mated with Homo sapiens. We were wrong and those with Northern European ancestry will have in the range of 2-4% Neanderthal DNA. This past week a new species Homo naledi was announced. We are not reaching that far back—but we are making incremental progress in tracing the path of our not so distant ancestors. In GROUP B that leads us to the Celts!

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