Monday, 29 September 2014

Patrick Guinness ... The Clans of the North West and their DNA profiles

Name - Patrick Guinness

Affiliations
Patrick Guinness is an Irish historian and author, and one of the heirs of the Guinness dynasty. He is a council member of the County Kildare Archaeological Society and of the Order of Clans of Ireland. He is a trustee of the Iveagh Trust and President of the Irish Georgian Society

In September 2010, he became a Knight of Justice of the Military and Hospitaller Order of St. Lazarus of Jerusalem (KLJ) at a ceremony in St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin and in 2013 he was made a Knight Commander of the Order of the Eagle of Georgia by Prince David Bagrationi of Georgia.

Day Job - He continues his father's business in real estate development and is a financial analyst. He formerly represented Sotheby's in Ireland.

How did he get into genetic genealogy?

Born in Dublin, he is the son of Desmond Guinness and Marie-Gabrielle von Urach. Through his mother's descent from the second Duke of Urach, he is a potential claimant to the medieval Kingdom of JerusalemKingdom of Lithuania and to the Principality of Monaco. He is also 2259th in line of succession to the British throne.

He has written a biography of his historic forbear Arthur Guinness, the founder of the Guinness brewery dynasty. 

He lectures on genetic genealogy relating to the early Irish dynasties and Viking Ireland, and has sponsored academic research on Irish genetics. 


So what will he be talking about?

In 2006 the oldest male-line lineage provable by DNA was revealed to the press and was widely reported around the world. Niall of the Nine Hostage's DNA profile became known as "N9H". However it also was clear that the profile had been around for centuries before he lived, and is found in 5% of men in Britain. Sadly, but informatively, it did not overlap as expected with the Ui Neill clans. This talk explains the context and reveals that some amateur sleuths nearly pipped the academics to the post. 


What DNA tests will be discussed?

Primarily Y-DNA


Where can people get more information about him or his topic?




These lectures are sponsored by FamilyTreeDNA and organised by volunteers from ISOGG (International Society of Genetic Genealogy).







Thursday, 25 September 2014

Rob Warthen ... Finding Sue - How one quest grew into the DNAGedcom & DNAadoption websites

Name - Rob Warthen

Affiliations - Masters Degree from Johns Hopkins University
Founder of DNAAdoption and AdoptionDNA_Tools
Member of ISOGG, SoaringAngels, AdoptionDNA, and UnknownFathersDNA
Project Administrator for Warthen/Wathen YDNA Project

Day Job - Write computer programs for Health Care Companies. Previously Technical Architect at Nasdaq Stock Market

Night Job - Teach Introduction to Computer Programming
Write Computer software for DNAGedcom.com Web site
Support Search Angels in their searches and training
Employed by my wife Sue as an apprentice gardener (aka dig holes)

How did you get into genetic genealogy?
I always enjoyed genealogy, ever since I was little. My aunt was a Librarian and it was fun to research. When my soon to be new mother-in-law said “You know Sue is adopted right? Since you know all that new-fangled computer stuff, could you help Sue find her biological mother”. What do you say to a sweet 80 year old lady who looks up to you with love in her eyes. I said of course I can. Mean time in my head I’m thinking “Boy, what did I get myself into”. I knew Sue was interested, but I didn’t want to get her hopes up. So I started researching and learning and gathered paper. In fact, she can still remember asking me what all that paper up on my desk was for. (Umm, nothing dear).

Sooo, that first year I get a message from some guy name Charlie Warthen and he asks me if I’d like to take a DNA test. I’m like what? Umm, no. Then I hear about the National Genographic program and think, well maybe. And then I get this wonderful idea. I’ll get Sue a DNA test for Christmas. Just what every girl wanted.

So now that I had a DNA test and it’s results, I was like now what. These are the early days when Autosomal DNA first came out. From those early days, I met a group of people called Search Angels who were also trying to learn how to use DNA to help find birth family. Search Angels are special people who help adoptees find their birth family. Together we came to the realization that no one knew what to do with all this information. At least not yet. So we all started trying different things. I quickly realized that no matter what, the key would be to gather as much information together as possible.

Great. Do you realize how much data is out there? A LOT. I quickly realized that the steps we had to go through were tremendous and very time consuming. So now I think back to that promise I made to that sweet lady, I think, how can computers help? So, I started to create tools to help me in the search. Soon, I found others complaining that it took so long to do some of these steps, so I offered to run my tools for them. Then I couldn’t keep up with the demand, so I created the DNAGedcom.com web site.

From there, it has grown to DNAGedcom.com, DNAAdoption.com and a training course called Working with Autosomal DNA Results. We are now at the second generation of people now paying it forward to those new to the journey. They have the tools and the ability to do so much more.

All because of that sweet 80 year old lady.

So what will you be talking about?
I will be taking you on a journey of discovery. You will learn more about our DNA Adoption group and all the people who help out. I will tell you more about Sue’s story and other stories of success and let down.

During this journey, I will tell you about the methodology that we use to successfully find birth family. I will also show you some of the tools that we use to make things easier on you. The methodologies and tools I will talk about are helpful whether your brick wall is your biological parents or your ancestors from 1800s.

So sit back and enjoy the journey. Savor every new item and know that each discovery and each failure brings you just one more step towards your goal.

What DNA tests will be discussed?
Y-DNA, autosomal DNA

To what surnames is this topic particularly relevant?
O’Toole, Gregg, Warthen, anyone who knows an adopted person, anyone with a Brick Wall

Where can people get more information about you or your topic?

The following websites:
DNAGedcom.com
DNAAdoption.com

The Soaring Angels Facebook page - www.facebook.com/pages/Soaring-Angels-Adoption-Search-and-Support/268866333135695

Our Warthen Surname Project at FTDNA - www.familytreedna.com/public/WarthenWorthen



These lectures are sponsored by FamilyTreeDNA and organised by volunteers from ISOGG (International Society of Genetic Genealogy).



Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Catherine Swift ... Emerging dynasties in a maritime world - hunting for Brian Boru’s genetic legacy

Name - Dr Catherine Swift

Qualifications - M.Phil (Dunelm). D.Phil (Oxon), M.Phil (Dublin)

Day Job - Dr Swift is Director of Irish Studies in Mary Immaculate College, University of Limerick. She undertook an MPhil. in Archaeology on the parallels between early Irish and Scottish church sites at the University of Durham; she received a second MPhil. in Old-Irish Language and Culture from Trinity College Dublin. Her DPhil. at Oxford examined the history of the cult of St Patrick. She has taught in many universities, including University College Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, The University of Liverpool, NUI Maynooth, NUI Galway, and The University of Melbourne. She served ten years as organising Secretary of the Irish Conference of Mediaevalists, and gives an annual Summer School in Old Irish in Limerick.

What are your research interests?
Archaeology, History and Languages (Old Irish/Latin) of pre-Norman Ireland – ogam stones, cults of St Patrick, St Brigit, St Columcille and local saints, ecclesiastical settlement, kings of Tara, Hiberno-Viking culture, high-medieval ship-building.

So what will you be talking about?
The internet is revolutionising academic research, breaking down many pre-existing barriers between university life and the wider world. Nowhere is this more true than in the field of genetic genealogy and it is local geographic and surname projects, and associated websites, run by citizen scientists, as well as university papers which are forcing the pace of change. This work is characterised by growing expertise in genetics and family history but the key research challenge for medieval historians is to investigate the origin and development of surnames in Ireland and Western Europe. This paper investigates the processes of surname adoption through the pivotal figure of Brian Boru.

What DNA tests will be discussed?
Y-DNA

Where can people get more information about you or your topic?

Academic papers can be accessed via https://limerick.academia.edu/catherineswift

IRCHSS/AHRC 2009-2011 – Genes of the Gall Goídel (principal Irish investigator partnering with Dr Christina Lee, University of Nottingham – see www.vikingage.mic.ul.ie)

IRCHSS New Ideas 2012: Linn na nGéinte Éireannacha
(in partnership with Dr Turi King, University of Leicester)




These lectures are sponsored by FamilyTreeDNA and organised by volunteers from ISOGG (International Society of Genetic Genealogy).






Daniel Crouch - Genetic analysis of the People of the British Isles yields historical and physiological insights


Name - Dr Daniel Crouch, University of Oxford

Qualifications - PhD (statistical genetics), MSc (genetic epidemiology), BSc (genetics)

Day Job - Postdoctoral researcher at the University of Oxford

How did you get into genealogy?
I am interested in genealogy via its overlap with the genetics of human populations. Although I began studying molecular genetics, I became interested in population genetics and its application to studying human variation. Population genetics is the study of how frequencies of genetic variants evolve, and we are often interested in how these changes occur over relatively small time scales, for example over the course of human history. Growing public interest in both genealogy and commercial genetic testing has the potential to expand geneticists' resources for investigating this very recent chapter of human evolution. My PhD research was in developing statistical models for predicting the geographic origin of individuals from their genetic information (using autosomal Single-Nucleotide Polymorphisms), and I now work on the genetics of human facial features, using single nucleotide polymorphism data along with 3D facial imaging.

What about your involvement with genetic genealogy?
I work on the 'People of the British Isles' (PoBI) project that aims to characterise the genetic makeup of the British Isles. Though this does not mainly involve working directly with genealogical data, the discoveries we have made are sure be of interest to a genetic-genealogical audience. These include inferences that we have been able to make about historical migration events and the patterns of genetic similarity with various areas of mainland Europe (and how these differ between regions in the British Isles), based on single-nucleotide polymorphisms. 

Our dataset is a powerful resource, as most of our volunteers have at least 3 grandparents born within close geographic proximity of one another. This has the effect of 'looking' back in time at the DNA variants as they were approximately a century ago, before modern migration began to eliminate the genetic barriers between us. 

More recently we have been researching the visible differences between people (known, to geneticists, as 'phenotypes') by gathering 3D photographs of individuals' faces, along with other data such as hair colour and skin tone. These can be compared statistically with their genetic information to locate the genes that control how we appear. Variants in these genes might differ in their frequencies between geographic areas, and from this it would follow that there would be discernable facial differences between regions.

So what will you be talking about?
I will discuss the recent work on the genetic history of the British Isles, plus analysis of the facial features, identifying specific genes that control our appearance.

Though our study predominantly recruits volunteers from Great Britain, we do also have samples from Northern Ireland. The genetic history of Great Britain indirectly sheds light on that of Ireland, and we have more recently collected samples from the Isle of Man, which might have even stronger genetic links.

My presentation will address the questions: How were the British Isles populated, and can this question be answered by a genetic analysis using the DNA of living people from the British Isles? What are the genetic relationships between the different regions of the British Isles? What are the genes that control differences in appearance between the people of the British Isles?

What DNA tests will be discussed?
Autosomal DNA

Where can people get more information about you or your topic?




These lectures are sponsored by FamilyTreeDNA and organised by volunteers from ISOGG (International Society of Genetic Genealogy).




Saturday, 20 September 2014

Brad Larkin ... 1) DNA versus the Irish Annals & 2) The Future of Genetic Genealogy

Photo of Brad Larkin, genetic genealogy, dna researcherName: Brad Larkin

Affiliations & Memberships: 

What do you do as a Day Job?
Create web-based, data-driven business applications - primarily for the health care industry.  Consulting on information technology services relating to electronic medical records.

What do you do as a Night Job?
Scientific writing and research on genetic genealogy combining geographical data with DNA and traditional genealogy sources.

How did you get into genealogy?
As a boy in the 1970s I was inspired by watching Alex Haley's television series, "Roots".  I went on to read a book on his research and was fascinated that one could comb through old records and learn things about ancestors that our parents and grandparents did not know.  It seemed like a kind of magic to me.  I thought, "If Alex Haley can do it, why can't I do it too?"  Starting out, I have memories of exhausting every single coin available on a Sunday in a small town in Texas in order to photocopy a written family history.

What about your involvement with genetic genealogy?
As I learned about my paternal Irish roots, I wanted to know how all the Larkins in the world were related.  e.g. Someone says, "I knew a man named Larkin from ... is he any relation?"  It kills me not to know the answer to that very simple question.  So I have embarked on this expedition to identify the 'family tree' and location of all Larkin origins which leads further to identifying the tree of surnames and lineages for the entire British Isles.  I consider my work part of the same mission taken on by MacFirbis, O'Donovan, MacLysaght, etc. -- we are just using new tools in this generation.  I know there will be future generations continuing this work with tools that we cannot even dream of now.  Thus, I consider written, scientific documentation of what we observe (and how we observe it) at this point in time to be very important.

So what will you be talking about?
DNA versus the Irish Annals
The topic for discussion will be the major Irish genealogical groups from Irish Annals such as high kings, the Uí Néill, and the provincial kings of Connacht, Munster, Leinster, and Ulster as well as Norman lineages.  A brief review of how much modern DNA linked to these lineages has been sampled and how consistent the DNA findings match the ancient genealogies.  This presentation is well suited for those who like to connect historical figures to their genetic genealogy research.

The Future of Genetic Genealogy
The growth of genetic genealogy has been rapid but exciting new possibilities are forecast from several major developments:  1) continued expansion of the number of markers commercially feasible to test; 2) sampling coverage to approach 100% of the genetic lineages of Ireland and the British Isles; 3) growth of reference databases with phased results and related tools.  These elements in combination will one day allow an individual's raw test results to be linked to an established genetic lineage and its ancestral geography in a matter of moments.  This discussion is intended for those interested in science, technology, and how genetic genealogy will develop as a field.

What DNA tests will be discussed?
Primarily Y DNA but also phasing of Autosomal DNA 

To what surnames is this topic relevant?
All British Isles surnames.  But many examples will be drawn from famous surnames such as O'Neil, O'Connor, Kelly, O'Brien, Kennedy, Butler, etc.

Where can people get more information about you or your topic?

Surname DNA Journal
Genetic Homeland
Larkin DNA Project
http://www.worldfamilies.net/surnames/larkin/



These lectures are sponsored by FamilyTreeDNA and organised by ISOGG (International Society of Genetic Genealogy).




Monday, 8 September 2014

DNA Lecture schedule announced

The schedule of DNA Lectures at Genetic Genealogy Ireland 2014 has been announced. This years schedule is even more packed than last year. With presenters from Ireland, the UK, the US, and Canada, this event is truly international reflecting the diaspora of the 80 million people of Irish descent worldwide. All levels of knowledge are catered for, from beginner to advanced, with representatives from academia as well as citizen science.

Click to enlarge - and see full schedule for each day at the end of this blog
The first lecture each day is devoted to the complete beginner and will help you understand the three main types of DNA test, what they can do for you, and how they can help you break through some of the Brick Walls and Dead Ends in your own family tree research. 

The most popular test at last year's Back to Our Past was autosomal DNA (atDNA, the Family Finder test). This helps you connect with genetic cousins to whom you are related within about 7 generations (i.e. you share one of your 64 4x great grandparents in common). Emily Aulicino takes a closer look at this powerful DNA test and gives examples of how successful it can be at connecting people, while Maurice Gleeson discusses how it can be used to solve adoption mysteries in your family tree. Adoption is also the topic of Rob Warthen's talk - Rob is using DNA to find his wife's biological family and in the process has created tools that have benefitted not only US adoptees but the entire global genetic genealogy community. His is a riveting story that will have you on the edge of your seat.


The keynote address is by Dr Spencer Wells from the National Genographic Project. This ground-breaking research project is mapping the migration of various human groups out of Africa and is telling the story of how Man inhabited every corner of this planet. It is a great honour to have Dr Wells at our meeting and his presentation is not to be missed!

Complimenting the story of human migrations, Gerard Corcoran will give a general overview of migrations into Ireland, whilst Cynthia Wells will discuss the challenges reconstructing the movement of people out of Ireland and into the Caribbean. Dr Daniel Crouch will provide the latest update on the People of the British Isles project which will revolutionise the way atDNA is used to define where in the British Isles your ancestry came from, and Tyrone Bowes will discuss how Y-DNA results can be used to localise Irish ancestral homelands.

In keeping with the millennial celebrations of the Battle of Clontarf, Prof Catherine Swift of Limerick will present on the genetic legacy of Brian Boru. Other Ancient Gaelic dynasties will be discussed by Brad Larkin, Paul Burns (Leinster), Patrick Guinness (North West), and Gerard Corcoran. Genetic Genealogy in Ireland is fast approaching the stage where a DNA test can connect you with a specific ancient genealogy.


This year marks the centenary of the start of World War One during which 49,000 Irish men died. Michelle Leonard will discuss how, 100 years later, the identities of some of the 500,000 men who still lie on the battlefield are being uncovered.

Dr Kirsten Bos will give a fascinating insight into the genetics of Plague, the Black Death, the Irish Potato Famine, and Tuberculosis, all of which killed so many of our ancestors over the centuries. And Paul Burns will discuss the Byrne/Burns/Beirne Surname Project and the Clan O'Byrne of Leinster. Every Irish family tree has a Byrne if you look hard enough!

The future of genetic genealogy will be discussed by Brad Larkin - if you think it is exciting today, wait till you hear where we will be in five years time.


The full schedule of lectures is below. The type of DNA test which will be covered in each lecture is indicated by a Y for Y-DNA, an M for mitochondrial DNA, and an A for autosomal DNA.

2014
FRIDAY 
17 October
Speaker’s summary

Opens at 12.00

11.30
No lecture (opens at noon)

12.30
Which DNA Test is best for you?
Dr Maurice Gleeson,
ISOGG
YMA
Y-DNA traces your father’s father’s father’s line, mitochondrial DNA traces your mother’s mother’s mother’s line, and autosomal DNA traces everything in between. With the help of practical examples of how DNA solved mysteries related to the Spearin family of Limerick, the bones of Richard III, and a Wedding Memento from the Australian desert, you can decide which test is best suited to solve your own individual genealogical conundrums.
13.30
DNA versus The Irish Annals
Brad Larkin,
SurnameDNA Journal
Y
The topic for discussion will be the major Irish genealogical groups from Irish annals such as high kings, the Uí Néill, and the provincial kings of Connacht, Munster, Leinster, and Ulster as well as Norman lineages.  A brief review of how much modern DNA linked to these lineages has been sampled and how consistent the DNA findings match the ancient genealogies.  This presentation is well suited for those who like to connect historical figures to their genetic genealogy research.
14.30
The Byrne / Burns / Beirne Surname Project
Paul Burns,
ISOGG
Y
This lecture will discuss the history of our Y-DNA project, the many unrelated lineages and clusters discovered along the way, the importance (or lack of) name variations/spellings, and the inaccuracies and mistaken local beliefs that DNA is correcting. It will show how we are using DNA to determine relationships between those with our surnames, and how far along we are tracing the ancient roots of each of our clusters.

15.30
Emerging dynasties in a maritime world – hunting for Brian Boru’s genetic legacy
Dr Catherine Swift,
University of Limerick
Y

The internet is revolutionising academic research, breaking down many pre-existing barriers between university life and the wider world.  Nowhere is this more true than in the field of genetic genealogy and it is local geographic and surname projects, and associated websites, run by citizen scientists, as well as university papers which are forcing the pace of change. This work is characterised by growing expertise in genetics and family history but the key research challenge for medieval historians is to investigate the origin and development of surnames in Ireland and Western Europe. This paper investigates the processes of surname adoption through the pivotal figure of Brian Boru.
16.30
Who’s Your Cousin? atDNA Knows!
Emily Aulicino,
ISOGG
A
Do you know all your cousins?  Autosomal DNA testing matches you with cousins descending from your 4th great-grandparents. This test helps adoptees find family and genealogists resolve lineage problems by finding cousins who can assist with your research. Understand how atDNA is inherited, including the X-chromosome, which differs for each gender.  Discover how to find common ancestors you share with matches using a five-step process.  Learn about others successes. A handout is available. My book Genetic Genealogy: The Basics and Beyond is for sale.  Free draw for the e-book version at the FTDNA stand. Three winners drawn at the presentation.
17.30
How to enhance your Y-DNA results through surname and haplogroup projects
John Cleary,
ISOGG
Y
You gain more value from Y-DNA tests when you join various kinds of group projects, and increase your chances of finding genetic matches.  This talk will present ways in which a surname project (featuring the surname Kemp and two Irish lineages of this name) and a haplogroup project (R1a) have extended what test-takers can understand from their results.  The talk will demonstrate the steps for developing a small surname lineage project, and will introduce two other types of project – geographical and heritage projects (with a Scottish focus) – that provide further ways to explore and compare your test results.
19.00
Closes at 7pm



2014
SATURDAY 
18 October
Speaker’s summary

Opens at 11.00

11.30
DNA for Beginners
Debbie Kennett,
University College London
YMA
This lecture will provide an easy-to-understand introduction to the use of DNA testing as part of your family history research. The cost of DNA testing has dropped dramatically in the last few years and is now affordable for everyone. The Y-chromosome DNA test is widely used in surname projects and explores the direct male line. The mitochondrial DNA test follows the motherline. Both Y-DNA and mtDNA tests can also provide insights into your deep ancestry. Autosomal DNA tests can be used to find matches with genetic cousins within the last five or six generations.
12.30
The Future of Genetic Genealogy
Brad Larkin,
SurnameDNA Journal
YMA
The growth of genetic genealogy has been rapid but exciting new possibilities are forecast from several major developments:  1) continued expansion of the number of markers commercially feasible to test; 2) sampling coverage to approach 100% of the genetic lineages of Ireland and the British Isles; 3) growth of reference databases with phased results and related tools.  These elements in combination will one day allow an individual's raw test results to be linked to an established genetic lineage and its ancestral geography in a matter of moments.  This study is intended for those interested in science, technology, and how genetic genealogy will develop as a field.
13.30
The Clan O'Byrne of Leinster as Defined by its DNA
Paul Burns &
Richard M Byrne,
ISOGG
Y
This lecture on the Clan O'Byrne of Leinster will discuss its ancient history from the tribal era when it provided kings of Leinster, its reemergence in the Wicklow Mountains as a close-knit clan, and its dispersal in the 1600s. It will describe its relations to other Leinster clans, and its possible ties to groups abroad--as indicated by DNA. We will show that the clan is not entirely patrilineal, but that it does have a large core that descends from a single ancestor. We will show how DNA has confirmed much of our knowledge of this clan, but also how it also has demolished some beliefs.
14.30
Reconstructing Irish-Caribbean Ancestry
Cynthia Wells,
iCARA
Y A
The middle decades of the 17th century witnessed countless Irish men and women shipped off to an island life of indentured servitude and forced labor never to return to their homeland. While many died quickly working under the harsh conditions of the sugar plantation others melted into a diverse culture that included AmerIndians and Africans. Historian Maurice Ashley wrote “The Caribbean was an area where Europe’s frontiers met”. The West Indies were also part of lucrative trade routes that brought many Caribbean Irish to the British colonies of Rhode Island, Virginia, and the Carolinas. Their descendants are now scattered throughout the United States. Reconstructing Irish Caribbean ancestry through the use of genetic genealogy combined with historical records is the long-term goal of iCARA. Our presentation will discuss where are and what the historical records reveal, and where the DNA can lead us.

15.30
Keynote Address:
The National Genographic Project
Dr Spencer Wells,
National Geographic
YMA
The Genographic Project is a multiyear research initiative led by National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Dr. Spencer Wells. Dr. Wells and a team of renowned international scientists are using cutting-edge genetic and computational technologies to analyze historical patterns in DNA from participants around the world to better understand our human genetic roots. The three components of the project are: 1) to gather and analyze research data in collaboration with indigenous and traditional peoples around the world; 2) to invite the general public to join this real-time scientific project and to learn about their own deep ancestry by purchasing a Genographic Project Participation and DNA Ancestry Kit, Geno 2.0; and 3) to use a portion of the proceeds from Geno 2.0 kit sales to further research and the Genographic Legacy Fund, which in turn supports community-led indigenous conservation and revitalization projects. Dr Wells gives the latest update from this fascinating project that is changing the way we think about who we are and where we come from.
16.30
Plagues of our Ancestors as revealed through Ancient DNA
Dr Kirsten Bos,
Universitat Tubingen
YMA
The recovery of ancient DNA from archeological tissues gives us an important window into the past.  Old bones hold secrets to the lives of our ancestors - who they were, what they ate, where they traveled, and what illnesses they had. Using state of the art biological techniques, we can now get an idea of what pathogens were plaguing people hundreds of years ago. Secrets about the Black Death, the Irish Potato Famine, and tuberculosis will be revealed in exciting detail.
17.30
Solving adoption mysteries in your family tree
Dr Maurice Gleeson,
ISOGG
YA
In some cases, DNA results can instantly connect birth parents with their long since adopted children, or adoptees with their long sought for birth families. Although this is the exception rather than the rule, it makes DNA testing a very attractive prospect for adoptees who have tried every other avenue of enquiry. In addition, DNA testing can be used to help identify the birth father’s surname for male adoptees, and for all adoptees autosomal DNA testing can identify birth families on both the maternal and paternal sides. This presentation explores the new techniques that are making reconnection and reunion an exciting and realistic prospect for adoptees and their biological families.
19.00
Closes at 7pm



2014
SUNDAY 
19 October
Speaker’s summary

Opens at 11.00

11.30
DNA Testing Basics
Katherine Borges,
ISOGG (Director)
YMA
If you are new to DNA testing, this presentation will tell you all you need to know. The three main tests are explained in simple terms so that you can easily see what each can do for you, helping you decide which one would be best to help you in your own family tree research.
12.30
Pinpointing your Irish Origin & beyond
Dr Tyrone Bowes,
IrishOrigenes
Y
A simple painless commercial ancestral Y-DNA test will reveal the names of people (who have also tested) with whom one shares a common male ancestor. But the surnames of those people are not random! Find out what those surnames reveal about your ancestors, how they can be used to pinpoint precisely where your direct male ancestor lived 1000 years ago and how they can be used to reconstruct one’s paternal ancestral journey over many thousands of years. 
13.30
Genetic analysis of the People of the British Isles yields historical and physiological insights
Dr Daniel Crouch,
University of Oxford
A
This presentation discusses recent work on the genetic history of Britain and Ireland, and how it is becoming possible to localise your DNA to specific subregions within the two islands. In addition, analysis of facial features, and the specific genes that control our appearance, will be discussed. This presentation addresses several important questions: How were Britain and Ireland populated, and can this question be answered by a genetic analysis using the DNA of living people? What are the genetic relationships between the different regions of the British Isles? What are the genes that control differences in appearance between the people of the British Isles? 
14.30
The Clans of the North West and their DNA profiles
Patrick Guinness,
Author & Historian
Y
In 2006 the oldest male-line lineage provable by DNA was revealed to the press and was widely reported around the world. Niall of the Nine Hostage's DNA profile became known as "N9H". However it also was clear that the profile had been around for centuries before he lived, and is found in 5% of men in Britain. Sadly, but informatively, it did not overlap as expected with the Ui Neill clans. This talk explains the context and reveals that some amateur sleuths nearly pipped the academics to the post. 
15.30
Finding Sue – How one quest grew into the DNAGedcom & DNAadoption websites
Rob Warthen,
DNAGedcom
YMA
I will be taking you on a journey of discovery.  You will learn more about our DNA Adoption group and all the people who help out.  I will tell you more about Sue’s story and other stories of success and let down. During this journey, I will tell you about the methodology that we use to successfully find birth family.  I will also show you some of the tools that we use to make things easier for you.  The methodologies and tools I will talk about are helpful whether your brick wall is your biological parents or your ancestors from the 1800s. So sit back and enjoy the journey.  Savor every new item and know that each discovery and each failure brings you just one more step towards your goal.

16.30
Identifying the Fallen Soldiers of WW1 – DNA on the battlefield
Michelle Leonard,
Fromelles Project
YM
Every year, the remains of soldiers who fell during WW1 are uncovered during farm work or road widening projects on what was the Western Front. In 2008, the discovery of a mass grave at Fromelles, containing 250 soldiers, led to the establishment of an identification process in which DNA played a crucial role. This presentation reveals how 144 of these 250 men have been positively identified so far, giving these soldiers back their names. In a year that commemorates the centenary of the start of WW1, DNA testing has helped the remembrance process, allowing these men to have gravestones with inscriptions that carry their true identity, rather than the anonymous phrase “Known Unto God”.
17.30
Using Genetic Genealogy to Map Irish Migrations
Gerard Corcoran,
ISOGG (Ireland)
YMA

The presentation will trace the history of migrations into and out of Ireland from the Mesolithic, Neolithic, Copper, Bronze, Iron Ages through Early Christianity, The Celtic Monastic Movement, Vikings, Normans, Gaelic, Tudor, Elizabethan, Cromwellian, Williamite periods, The Wild Geese, The Penal Laws, The Great Famine, Georgian, Victorian and Modern periods. We will look at how the latest Next Generation Sequencing Tests and Ancient Genealogies can help tell these stories. Finally we will look at concrete projects that will help connect the 70 million strong Irish Diaspora to its homeland.

19.00
Closes at 7pm









Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Dr Spencer Wells to give Keynote Address

Dr Spencer Wells of the National Genographic Project is to give the Keynote Address at Genetic Genealogy Ireland 2014. Dr Wells is is a leading population geneticist and director of the Genographic Project from National Geographic. 

The Genographic Project is the brainchild of Spencer Wells. First started in 2005, Dr. Wells heads a team of renowned international scientists and uses cutting-edge genetic and computational technologies to analyze historical patterns in DNA from participants around the world to better understand the genetic roots of all humanity. 

The project has three components:
  1. To collaborate with indigenous and traditional peoples around the world in the collection and analysis of research data
  2. To involve the general public in this real-time scientific project and to learn about their own deep ancestry in the process (by purchasing the DNA Ancestry Kit, Geno 2.0)
  3. To support community-led indigenous conservation and revitalization projects
Dr Wells's own personal journey of discovery led him to enrol at the University of Texas aged only 16 years old. After graduating 3 years later, he pursued his Ph.D. at Harvard University under the tutelage of distinguished evolutionary geneticist Richard Lewontin. Beginning in 1994, Wells conducted postdoctoral training at Stanford University's School of Medicine with famed geneticist Luca Cavalli-Sforza, considered the "father of anthropological genetics." At Oxford University, he served as director of the Population Genetics Research Group of the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics at Oxford.

In 2001, he shifted his focus to communicating his scientific discovery through books and documentary films. From that was born The Journey of Man: A Genetic Odyssey, an award-winning book and documentary that aired on PBS in the U.S. and National Geographic Channel internationally. Written and presented by Wells, the film chronicled his globe-circling, DNA-gathering expeditions in 2001-02 and laid the groundwork for the Genographic Project.

Since the Genographic Project began, Wells's work has taken him to over three dozen countries, including Chad, Tajikistan, Morocco, Papua New Guinea, and French Polynesia, and he recently published his second book, Deep Ancestry: Inside the Genographic Project. 

Dr Wells will present an overview of the Genographic Project and the latest developments in his research. Not to be missed!



Dr Spencer Wells describes how DNA is helping to map human migrations out of Africa, going back over 200,000 years, and how a simple cheek swab can reveal amazing information about your deep ancestry and ethnic makeup.