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A Norfolk L-M20
06-20-2017, 10:39 PM
Please excuse the blog-like review nature of this post, as I've lazily copied much of the text over from my blog.

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=17097&d=1497997549

Living DNA produced their first update. An update by a "DNA for Ancestry" business can sound like an admission of failure. To some, it could sound like a recall due to product failure. "Your previous ancestry was a mistake". This only applies if you have bought into some marketing campaigns, that autosomal DNA tests for ancestry actually work even close to 100%. Surprise, they don't! They are cutting edge, in development, and far from accurate below a Continental level. They are still somewhere in the twilight between being nothing more than a genetic lottery, and actually becoming a tool that is useful. Therefore "updates" are to be welcomed. They are a sign that the business wants to improve the test accuracy. That is to the credit of Living DNA.

My latest results? First of all, a quick recap on my actual ancestry, as supported by family history, local history, ethnicity, and by a traditionally researched record based family tree that includes over 270 direct ancestors over the past 380 years. I'm English. Indeed, all of my direct ancestors, appear to have been South East English. More precise, I'm East Anglian. On family history and recorded genealogy, I'd suggest that between 75% and 85% of my direct ancestors over the past three centuries were East Anglian, almost all from the County of Norfolk. Others on my father's side, if not in East Anglia, still in Southern England.

That I feel, makes me an interesting subject for ancestral auDNA testing. You see, my ancestry is very localised here in South East England. DNA tests such as 23andMe that claim to accurately plot ancestry over the past 300 - 500 years should get me. But they don't. This is because their algorythms, and reference data set designs fail over different ages. They also (although they sometimes deny it), fail to discriminate against older population background. We East Anglians and South East English have been heavily admixed with non-British populations on the European Continent. Not so much over the past 500 years, so much as over the past few thousand years.

The new Results.

Below are my Living DNA regional ancestry, based on Standard Mode.

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=17104&d=1497997939

Below are my Standard Mode results broken down into sub regions.

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=17105&d=1497997946

Below is a table, comparing my recorded ancestry, with my early Living DNA results in Standard, now my revised results.

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=16909&d=1497624911

Living DNA has now introduced two new modes of confidence called complete and cautious modes. First the Complete results:

Below are my Complete Mode results in regional:

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=17102&d=1497997609

Below are my Complete Mode results for sub-regional:

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=17103&d=1497997927

Now the Cautious results:

Below are my Cautious Mode results in regional:

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=17098&d=1497997561

Finally, below are my Cautious Mode results for sub-regional:

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=17099&d=1497997569

Conclusions

No auDNA test, by any DNA-for-ancestry company has yet come close to assigning me 100% English or even British. They don't get me. 23andMe gives me 32-37% "British & Irish". FT-DNA gives me "36% British". Therefore, to be fair, Living DNA, giving me 70% "Great Britain or Ireland", give me the best result. However, Living DNA has started out with the largest, best quality British data-set of any DNA-for-ancestry company, and is often accused of a bias towards Britain in it's results. If so, then my 70% still looks weak. They are planning on producing similar quality data sets soon for Ireland, Germany, then France. Therefore any results, will as I started out saying at the beginning of this post, be perpetually progressive. Businesses that do not improve data sets or algorithms, will not get any better. They are not progressive.

I get Southern European in other tests besides this one. Living DNA points to Tuscany. FT-DNA before a recent update gave me 32% Southern European, although they have revised this down to a little noise from South-East Europe! 23andMe gives me 2% Southern European - but this appears nothing unusual for an English tester. None-the-less, I am interested in trying to better understand, why some of these tests give me this "Southern European" admixture, for which my family history, local history, and recorded genealogy has absolutely no account. It equally reflects in ancient calculators that give me a little bit more Neolithic Farmer than for other English, which on average, already have a little more Neolithic Farmer than other British or Irish populations do.

The New Complete and Cautious Modes

How do I feel about these? At Sub-Regional level, the Complete mode starts to get silly. For the first time, Living DNA at this level, starts to even suggest some ancestry from Wales, SW Scotland, and Northern Ireland. Only small percentages - but I just don't buy them.

However, the Cautious Mode, I start to like. My British ancestry doesn't increase, but it looks more realistic, although with strange enigmatic suggestions still of Italian ancestry in the mix. At Sub-Regional level, Cautious Mode also looks a little more likely. My East Anglian remains at 37%, I however, lose Lincolnshire (which does exist in my record), but retain Cornwall. I think Cornwall unlikely - however, there is just a small hint that something could be there, in surname evidence of a brick-walled great great great grandparent. So maybe, just maybe.

East Anglia

I seriously doubt that my East Anglian ancestry over the past 300 years genuinely falls much below 75%. Living DNA only appears to recognise a half of it at 37% - but they claim to be easily able to identify East Anglian DNA. They call it "Distinct" because of it's high levels of Continental admixture. They have admitted that based on their early data sets, that it was hard to separate from Germanic. I don't know why it isn't stronger in my results. I honestly do believe that the test underplays it on my results, even though it is the strongest of any population in my test results. My East Anglian ancestors lived mainly in Eastern, Central, and Southern Norfolk.

Living DNA also provide a chart of the Continental "contributing regions" to East Anglian ancestry:

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=17101&d=1497997595

Finally, a chart breaking down their proposal of my British ancestry at Cautious mode:

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=17100&d=1497997579

I'm not disappointed with Living DNA. That it does identify me as 37% East Anglian is I believe, incredibly good, and far advanced over any other DNA-for-ancestry test. I'm looking forward to more updates in the future. Well done Living DNA.

sktibo
06-21-2017, 01:40 AM
Great review Norfolk, would you consider posting this to their facebook page? I think it's exactly the kind of honest press that can make the company look good, but also keep away potential customers who are expecting some kind of magic.

ADW_1981
06-22-2017, 07:35 AM
I'm not trying to be a dick, and I think Norfolk is a good guy, but his results are a little atypical for the standard British user. While I think the Brits are a rather homogeneous bunch, there are probably some family trees with some outliers from other places in Europe originally, if not outside Europe altogether within the 500 year time frame. Just take one look at his Y-chromosome, and I don't mean this in a bad way, just stating the obvious. It could be a red herring, but maybe not.

I'm up to 5 generations removed from Britain, and my results are very accurate. That said, I think people with heavy amounts of ancestry outside UK are kind of rolling the dice here with this test, unless they are content with a very broad category.

06-22-2017, 07:56 AM
Hey Great Review Norfolk, The test also pretty much Nailed my majority ancestry from Wales and South Wales in Particular.
So let's say, somebody coming to LivingDNA blind to their ethnic heritage, this would be a great tool.

Erlembaldo
06-22-2017, 12:38 PM
I'm not completely well-versed in British genetics, but I think when taking a broader interpretation of your results, they're actually very accurate given the limitations of these tests. Going under the assumption that there's going to be overlap between East Anglia and southeast England genetically, that bumps your EA score up to 53.3%; then when you add the 11.2% NW European admixture (which LDNA's algos confuse with East Anglia) it's now close to 65%. So the fact that they were able to more or less pinpoint 65% of your ancestry to SE England blows away both 23andme and FTDNA.

06-22-2017, 12:47 PM
I agree with Erlembaldo, I think they have done a terrific job.

Celt_??
06-22-2017, 01:53 PM
The results are just plain pseudo-science most obviously characterized by reporting results to a tenth of a decimal place - or even a hundredth! Given the way our reported results by region varied over the past 6 months by 5, 10, 15% in absolute terms (and multiples of those numbers in relative terms), does anyone seriously believe that Living DNA has the accuracy to report results to the tenth of a percent? And remember their algorithms were developed by Ph.D,s in statistics. They know full well that they do not have the accuracy to report results as such for Norfolk: "Norway = 0.43%, Spain = 1.15%, Mordovia = 1.3%, France = 1.2%, North Italy = 1.2%, Aegean = 2.2%, Southwest Scotland Northern Ireland = 1.1%, Southwest Border = 1.4%, South England = 1.6%, Devon = 1.6%, Central England = 1.8%" But to do so implies to a naive public an accuracy which Living DNA scientists know they couldn't expect in their most optimistic dreams. If one stands back even slightly, the reported results are simply laughable.

Most folks are turning themselves into pretzels attempting to rationalize their ever changing results. I think that the developers and investors in Living DNA know full well that a large chunk of the global DNA testing public are Americans longing to find a link to their unknown UK ancestor. And they have developed a "product" to sell to them. Its as simple as that.

If someone has a documented pedigree, why would they want to take such a test?

ollie444
06-22-2017, 02:01 PM
The results are just plain pseudo-science most obviously characterized by reporting results to a tenth of a decimal place. Given the way our reported results be region varied over the past 6 months by 5, 10, 15% in absolute terms (and multiples of those numbers in relative terms),does anyone believe that Living DNA has the accuracy to report results to the tenth of a percent? And remember their algorithms were developed by Ph.D,s in statistics. They know full well that they do not have the accuracy to report results as such. But to do so implies to a naive public an accuracy which they know they couldn't expect in their most optimistic dreams.

Everyone is turning themselves into pretzels attempting to rationalize their ever changing results. I think that the developers and investors of Living DNA know full well that a large chunk of the global DNA testing public are Americans longing to find a link to their unknown UK ancestor. And they have developed a "product" to sell to them. Its as simple as that.

Firstly the percentages have changed because of chip issues. Secondly, yes I believe them because my results are almost spot on.

Celt_??
06-22-2017, 02:08 PM
Firstly the percentages have changed because of chip issues. Secondly, yes I believe them because my results are almost spot on.

Chip issues or algorithm issues? And which result fits? We were provided so many variations of our results over the months, one might more or less fit by chance ;~)

As Erlembaldo noted regarding Norfolk's results: IF "Going under the assumption that there's going to be overlap between East Anglia and southeast England genetically, that bumps your EA score up to 53.3%; then when you add the 11.2% NW European admixture (which LDNA's algos confuse with East Anglia) it's now close to 65%. So the fact that they were able to more or less pinpoint 65% of your ancestry to SE England blows away both 23andme and FTDNA."

As I recall Norfolk's pedigree for 5 or so generations is entirely from East Anglia. Let's be frank, Living DNA - a company that feigns accuracy by reporting results to a tenth of one percent - reported precisely 36.9 % East Anglia.

Pretzels anyone?

06-22-2017, 02:45 PM
Chip issues or algorithm issues? And which result fits? We were provided so many variations of our results over the months, one might more or less fit by chance ;~)


I dont think its chance, there is pretty neat science here (albeit work in progress).

For somebody like myself with known UK ancestry ( Mostly S wales) living in Germany to apply for this test from Germany, and be given:-
South Wales - 52.7%

I do not think that can happen by chance.

sktibo
06-22-2017, 03:03 PM
The results are just plain pseudo-science most obviously characterized by reporting results to a tenth of a decimal place - or even a hundredth! Given the way our reported results by region varied over the past 6 months by 5, 10, 15% in absolute terms (and multiples of those numbers in relative terms), does anyone seriously believe that Living DNA has the accuracy to report results to the tenth of a percent? And remember their algorithms were developed by Ph.D,s in statistics. They know full well that they do not have the accuracy to report results as such for Norfolk: "Norway = 0.43%, Spain = 1.15%, Mordovia = 1.3%, France = 1.2%, North Italy = 1.2%, Aegean = 2.2%, Southwest Scotland Northern Ireland = 1.1%, Southwest Border = 1.4%, South England = 1.6%, Devon = 1.6%, Central England = 1.8%" But to do so implies to a naive public an accuracy which Living DNA scientists know they couldn't expect in their most optimistic dreams. If one stands back even slightly, the reported results are simply laughable.

Most folks are turning themselves into pretzels attempting to rationalize their ever changing results. I think that the developers and investors in Living DNA know full well that a large chunk of the global DNA testing public are Americans longing to find a link to their unknown UK ancestor. And they have developed a "product" to sell to them. Its as simple as that.

If someone has a documented pedigree, why would they want to take such a test?

1. Because it's fun
2. Because they want to get an idea of their genetic inheritance, paper trail can't do that.

Yeah, I'm definitely turning myself into a pretzel as you say, but I understand that ultimately the results don't necessarily mean I have ancestry from the regions I match, just that these are the reference populations I'm closest to. For a lot of people they do appear to reflect their ancestry of course, but if I were adopted, these results would have pointed me in several wrong directions.

Amerijoe
06-22-2017, 03:04 PM
Hey Great Review Norfolk, The test also pretty much Nailed my majority ancestry from Wales and South Wales in Particular.
So let's say, somebody coming to LivingDNA blind to their ethnic heritage, this would be a great tool.

I'm half blind and still in the dark. Maybe in several more updates I'll be able to see some light. :) Joe

Amerijoe
06-22-2017, 03:41 PM
I dont think its chance, there is pretty neat science here (albeit work in progress).

For somebody like myself with known UK ancestry ( Mostly S wales) living in Germany to apply for this test from Germany, and be given:-
South Wales - 52.7%

I do not think that can happen by chance.

How does where actually work with that analogy?

A Norfolk L-M20
06-22-2017, 05:06 PM
@ADW_1981, I'm not at all insulted, and you are certainly not being a dick. NPEs and incorrect genealogy are a fact of Life. I'm often contemplating if my autosomal DNA could be a result of either or both. If I found that my grandmother had an German butcher, while my great grandmother had an Italian milkman, I'd finally have answers that work. However, if you knew their communities, you'd know that it is although always possible - just rather unlikely. Small rural communities in Norfolk. My Y-DNA is SW Asian / Iranian. Yet not one test, or calculator has suggested that I have any more signal from that part of the world than for any other Briton. My haplotype hasn't been found elsewhere in Europe - except for another Southern English family, so it is unlikely to have been brought here (based on current evidence) by a German or Italian. My nearest non-English match is from Iran. Any autosomal DNA from my Y immigrant ancestor appears washed out by recombination. It's been here a while.

My DNA is atypical for a Briton, I totally agree. However, my mother, who has an incredibly localised rural Norfolk ancestry (see below), has similar results to me on 23andMe. The only other Norfolk person of a local family on 23 that I have seen the results for, had similar atypical results. I suspect that LDNA are correct about our uniqueness.

http://www.anthrogenica.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=9034&d=1461724212

@Celt_?? No, I'm not East Anglian up to five generations. Seven out of eight of my great grandparents were Norfolk born in Norfolk families.

My paternal line great grandfather was from the Deptford and Lewisham parts of London-Kent. His recorded ancestors mainly came from Oxfordshire, and Berkshire, with one "lost in London" brick wall at a 3 x great grandparent called John Shawers, that I have not found an origin for. The Oxon / Berks ancestry looks correctly identified in the results by South Central England and South England. Could the Shawers be the Cornish percentage? There were Shawers there, and Shores in Yorkshire.

I also had a Norfolk 3 x great grandmother on my father's side that married a drover from Maxey, Peterborough. That appears correctly reflected by my Lincolnshire percentage. I hope to test more lines through DNA matches in the future. So far I have proven it this way on lines both on my mother's and father's side.

Yes, I'm disappointed that LDNA are so very confident in their ability to recogognise East Anglian, but only recognise 37% of what I'd predict on paper trail to be nearer to 75-85% over ten generations. However - get this. That they recognise even a half of it is pretty incredible don't you think? Such a small region on the planet, in a West Eurasian population that has been so admixed over the past few thousand years? So close to other British, Dutch, German, Belgian, and Normand neighbours?

06-22-2017, 05:11 PM
How does where actually work with that analogy?

The inference is about anonymity and not being able to guess an ethnic background based on location.
I was trying to make the point maybe badly, that it is science and not chance or guesswork involved.

JonikW
06-22-2017, 05:38 PM
The inference is about anonymity and not being able to guess an ethnic background based on location.
I was trying to make the point maybe badly, that it is science and not chance or guesswork involved.

Plus, paper trails themselves can be inaccurate for obvious reasons. I'm not referring to A Norfolk here though.:)

Amerijoe
06-22-2017, 06:03 PM
1. Because it's fun
2. Because they want to get an idea of their genetic inheritance, paper trail can't do that.

Yeah, I'm definitely turning myself into a pretzel as you say, but I understand that ultimately the results don't necessarily mean I have ancestry from the regions I match, just that these are the reference populations I'm closest to. For a lot of people they do appear to reflect their ancestry of course, but if I were adopted, these results would have pointed me in several wrong directions.

Touche', anyone with unknown lines could end up in quite a quagmire of conflicting results. The more I research my DNA the more I am utterly amazed at the complexity of it and equally amazed at the scientific detail which can be extracted. Livingdna is imho, the best testing company for those with high British ancestry, for most others not so much, but I anticipate that will improve with additional sampling. All the testing I've done to date, affirms my British ancestry, which was a question mark less than two years ago. I have been able to deduce my maternal grandfather was more than likely L21 through my aunt's abundance of male line matches indicating M269 which many a McKenzie does have. The issue I have is my personal paperwork was deliberately misrepresented and later manipulated to ensure a false line of ancestry. People do strange things for what they think are good reasons at the time.

Dorian, composite Dad, is excited for what the future holds in genealogical testing with increased sampling and improved algorithms, his portrait is looking years younger. ;)

ollie444
06-22-2017, 08:05 PM
Chip issues or algorithm issues? And which result fits? We were provided so many variations of our results over the months, one might more or less fit by chance ;~)

As Erlembaldo noted regarding Norfolk's results: IF "Going under the assumption that there's going to be overlap between East Anglia and southeast England genetically, that bumps your EA score up to 53.3%; then when you add the 11.2% NW European admixture (which LDNA's algos confuse with East Anglia) it's now close to 65%. So the fact that they were able to more or less pinpoint 65% of your ancestry to SE England blows away both 23andme and FTDNA."

As I recall Norfolk's pedigree for 5 or so generations is entirely from East Anglia. Let's be frank, Living DNA - a company that feigns accuracy by reporting results to a tenth of one percent - reported precisely 36.9 % East Anglia.

Pretzels anyone?

Chip issues are what we were told. My results were pretty good in the first place, with the one-off change I have had to them only making them better. I think Norfolk's results are clearly a particularly tricky case.

In complete mode I have been assigned ancestry from 13 of their 21 UK regions. I have ancestry from all of these regions and haven't been assigned ancestry from any regions where I have none (please note this is barring some ancestry assigned to SE England which should have been put around midlands area. I have emailed Living DNA and they have passed this on to their algorithm team). The only place I have ancestry missing from is East Anglia, where I expected about 6.25% from (this may even partly be the East Anglian). Maybe there is a problem with results from East Anglia, I expect the German project will help with this.

Given the incredible accuracy of my results, I would certainly not say 'pseudo-science'.

sktibo
06-22-2017, 08:46 PM
Touche', anyone with unknown lines could end up in quite a quagmire of conflicting results. The more I research my DNA the more I am utterly amazed at the complexity of it and equally amazed at the scientific detail which can be extracted. Livingdna is imho, the best testing company for those with high British ancestry, for most others not so much, but I anticipate that will improve with additional sampling. All the testing I've done to date, affirms my British ancestry, which was a question mark less than two years ago. I have been able to deduce my maternal grandfather was more than likely L21 through my aunt's abundance of male line matches indicating M269 which many a McKenzie does have. The issue I have is my personal paperwork was deliberately misrepresented and later manipulated to ensure a false line of ancestry. People do strange things for what they think are good reasons at the time.

Dorian, composite Dad, is excited for what the future holds in genealogical testing with increased sampling and improved algorithms, his portrait is looking years younger. ;)

One thing I notice is that people who are entirely of one ethnicity consistently appear to score around the 50% mark in that category: Jessie is around 50% Ireland, AntG's mother got around 50% SW Scotland and Northern Ireland and iirc she is entirely of North Irish descent. Of course it's not an unbreakable rule, but it seems consistent. Norfolk is 75% ish east anglian? going off memory i think he's 36%... if we take that as a percentage out of 50, that'd mean he's 72% ish. I really don't think most of our small percentages (yes, I'm looking at you Cornwall) are ancestral indicators. Rather, I think these are just overlapping similarities which understandably appear. It's so easy to forget that we are dealing with incredibly similar populations, and sometimes one can get hung up on the differences between say Scotland and England. If they weren't incredibly similar I don't think someone like Jessie would end up getting English regions in her ethnicity estimate.

A Norfolk L-M20
06-22-2017, 08:47 PM
In recent times I've traced down from a lot of the siblings of direct ancestors, it's becoming a bit of a challenge to find out more about what happened to them.

What keeps striking me, is that very often in recent centuries and recorded genealogy, I'm a descendant of those that stayed behind in the farms and villages. Many of the siblings of my direct ancestors moved away. Some up north to Yorkshire. Some down to London. Others to Tasmania and Australia (most but not all voluntarily). Some appear to have moved to North America.

I must have a lot of distant cousins out there.