Category Archives: DNA

23andMe Upgrade Policy Coming?

I tested my DNA at 23andMe in February 2010 on what was called their “chip 2”. Time marches on and 23andMe has developed new chips and new Wellness reports. They are on “chip 5” now. Some of these reports are not available for people who tested early because the SNPs used in the new reports were not included on the older chips.

A couple of weeks ago, I sent a note to the 23andMe Helpdesk asking about an upgrade policy wherein I could retest AND keep all of my ancestry matches I have collected over the years and not have to respond again to all of those health questionnaires.

The Customer Care team responded within a few days with some optimistic news. I don’t think it is wrong of me to share part of their response with you, especially since they did not say it was a secret. This is the salient part:

“Customers genotyped on our latest genotyping chip are eligible for the reports. Upgrades are unavailable at this time. We are currently working on an upgrade policy for our customers and would encourage you to wait for this policy to be finalized. The upgrade policy will allow you to be genotyped on our most up-to-date chip at a discounted rate. More information about upgrades will be available in the coming months.”

I am excited about what this “upgrade policy” will include. They did not specifically say my matches would be retained, but the very idea that they are thinking about it sounds hopeful. “Willing to wait, I am.”

“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.” – Carl Bard

Genetic Genealogy DNA Sig Nov 10

Barbara Rae-Venter’s lecture to the Genetic Genealogy Ireland conference has made it’s way to YouTube You can see it here: Barbara in Ireland

There were many other big names in the Genealogy/DNA field at the conference! You can subscribe to the Genetic Genealogy Ireland channel at YouTube and watch them all for free as they appear.

Of course, you can see Barbara and many other LOCAL folks who are interested in DNA and genealogy at the next DNA Sig, right here in the Monterey Bay Area at 10:00 am this coming Saturday Nov 10 at the Family History Center in Seaside. FHC location

“Why do you never see elephants hiding in the trees? – Because they are really good at it.”

Genetic Genealogy Ireland 2018 Lectures Are Coming Online

The recordings of the live-streamed lectures from the Genetic Genealogy Ireland 2018 are going to be put on YouTube over the next few weeks. It appears they may already be available on Facebook. These recordings are available for free.

The conference was held 19-21 October 2018 in Dublin, Ireland. We here at MoCoGenSo are interested because our DNA SIG leader, Barbara Ray-Venter, was one of the presenters! Her presentation should be on YouTube in the next few days.

A complete list of the presentations along with the site addresses of the conference, of the YouTube channel, and Facebook Group can be found here. Barbara’s talk is the third in the list.

Genetic Genealogy Ireland

“The true hallmark of genius is the ability to explain things simply.” – Richard Feynman

Elizabeth Warren’s Native American DNA Results: What They Mean

The link below goes to the website DNAeXplained, by Roberta Estes. The link takes you to a very complete review of the current state of Native American DNA testing and how it applies to Senator Elizabeth Warren. This is NOT a political piece.

The article is very well written and very complete. If you are at all interested in genetic testing and applying it to genealogy in the real world, you should give it a go.


As Roberta says “This is the first of a series of two articles.” You will have to read the 2nd article on your own, so save the link to her website for future use.

“The left wing and the right wing belong to the same bird.”

Searching for DNA links?

Are you searching for a link to a third cousin?  Your DNA matches but you are still faced with a tree that looks like this?  

Then you should come to our monthly DNA SIG (Special Interest Group) that meets on the 2nd Saturday at the Family History Center.  This month, we meet next Saturday Oct 13 at 10:00 am.  Perhaps there is a way to fill in those blanks!