Ancestry.com adds DNA genealogy to the mix...dare I peek?

Genealogy site announces plans to add DNA digging to its mix of ancestral-sleuthing tools.

Ancestry.com announced plans on Monday to add DNA digging to its mix of ancestral-sleuthing tools.

And for some, err...specifically me, it may answer an inside family joke as to whether my husband and I are actually distant, distant and, again, I emphasize distant, kissing cousins. We learned on our wedding day, while his mother and my grandmother chatted, that his grandparents and my great-grandparents were from the same small village in Hiroshima, Japan. Hmm, what are the odds?!?

Some things are better left unknown.

For those who are curious about their own genealogy, Ancestry's parent, The Generations Network, is teaming up with Sorenson Genomics to offer DNA genealogy database searches by the end of summer.

With Ancestry's DNA kit, which is set to sell for less than $200, users will swab their cheek with a Q-Tip-like device and mail the results to Sorenson. Within two or three weeks, Sorenson plans to process the swab sample and have the information will entered into the user's database. Users can opt to make their DNA information, online family trees and historical documents accessible to others or keep them private, said Brett Folkman, vice president of strategy and business development at Ancestry.

The DNA test examines the Y chromosome for paternal lineage, as well as the Mitochondrial DNA for the maternal lineage, said Doug Fogg, chief operating officer at Sorenson.

Sorenson, which conducts genetic genealogy testing, has offered a consumer version of its service since 2001, under its Relative Genetics division. The division, however, will cease to exist once the transfer of data is made to Ancestry, which will handle the marketing and database, while Sorenson continues to oversee the lab work.

Although the ability to conduct a home DNA test and get the results with relative ease are tempting, the thought of sitting across the kitchen table with a distant cousin-husband may be little too weird to down with the morning coffee.

 

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