PDA

View Full Version : Y-DNA Shorthand



rms2
01-30-2021, 04:44 PM
Anyone who has even a passing familiarity with Y-DNA haplogroup notation knows how cumbersome the longhand version is. For example, here is the 2020 ISOGG rendition of R1b-DF41: R1b1a1b1a1a2c1a1d.

Yikes! :jaw:

That one is several steps back upstream from my own terminal SNP.

Unless I miscounted, DF41 in the longhand has 17 characters. 17!

That's wild!

Needless to say, I much prefer the shorthand: R1b-DF41.

Probably most of us do, so what's the point of this thread?

Well, as most of you also know, quite some time ago, FTDNA went with a version of the shorthand that includes just the first letter of the haplogroup, signifying only the major Y-DNA branch, followed by a hyphen and the name of the terminal SNP. For example, instead of R1b-DF41, FTDNA renders it as R-DF41.

Okay, fine: it is short and sweet. However, for the price of just two more measly characters, you get much more information, and it is important information. R1b-DF41 is much more informative than R-DF41, and it's not much longer. First, it tells us we are talking about an R1 subclade, and, second, it tells us it is part of the major R1b division of Y-DNA haplogroup R1. That's a lot of information without getting too longwinded and going anywhere near the Byzantine length of the longhand version.

So, here's my plea: when using the shorthand, and writing about Y-DNA haplogroups and subclades, or putting yours in your profile, use a couple of extra characters, and don't follow FTDNA's practice of using just the single letter. Give us, as briefly as possible, with a maximum of two extra characters, a little bit more information about what branch you're talking about.

Thanks.

Wing Genealogist
01-31-2021, 01:27 PM
I know I am likely beating a long-dead horse, but (as I see it) the time is long overdue to give a new major haplogroup "U" to L51 (or somewhere immediately above). This would recognize the importance of this patrilineage in Western Europe (where the majority of current DNA testers have their Most Distant Known Paternal Ancestor [MDKPA]).

It would also allow for the incorporation of new ancestral clades above L51/U without the longhand haplogroup needing to be changed yet again.

RobertCasey
01-31-2021, 05:00 PM
I am about ready to convert to the FTDNA standard for several reasons:

1) It confuses people who are new to have two conflicting standards.
2) Sure, R1a is quick way to rule out R1b but then you have R, R1, R2 and several intermediate branches.
3) Only saves two characters - but just to filter out R1a ?? Not worth it.

Adding new letters like U to Z would help some for sure. L151 would be the best split for U as it is the father of U106 and P312. Or you could let U106 remain
at R and make P312 be the starting point for U. But I think U to Z should be left to the anthropologists to decide. What you really want is to be able to quickly
rule out the major branches of the haplotree based on the number of branches involved (which should track the number of testers). This would be somewhat
European concentric at first but other geographies would some day use the same methodology. Keep R as the first letter and then you would have RA to RZ to really
split things up over the next few decades. Just this split into RA to RE would allow everyone to sort out 70 to 80 % of the testers that are not relevant to your
analysis.

But how many branches would result in a new RA type designation. 5,000, 2,000 or 1,000 ? At 5,000, only P312 and L21 would qualify. At 2,000, U106 and
DF27 would be added. This methodology should be driven only but quantity of branches. At 1,000 testers, U152 and DF49 would be added. But then you get
into branches below these larger haplogroups. DF13 should not receive a letter since it only removes 173 branches from L21. Z2265 has 3,521 branches but
this branch only removes five branches from U106. I vote for 2,000 branches to qualify and at least 2,000 branches must remain in the father as well. This
would result in only five branches under R. RA would be M207 to L151 - 3,852 branches. RB would be U106 with 3,528 branches. RC would be P312 (less
L21 and DF27) - 6,798 branches. RD - L21 would be 6,543 branches. RE would be DF27 with 2,312. U152 would probably later become RF as it is approaching
2,000 branches but currently has only 1,527 branches.

rms2
01-31-2021, 05:17 PM
I am not in favor of any major switches, like going to "U" for L51 or something like that. That would render too much of the old literature absolutely obsolete and practically indecipherable without a lesson in the history of Y-DNA haplogroup nomenclature. Not worth it, IMHO.

Not only that, but I am kind of emotionally attached to R, R1, and R1b. Besides that, U is the first letter in ugly, and such a switch would be just that.

Scary. I've thought about having my shorthand Y-DNA haplogroup designation inscribed on my tombstone, and I hate the thought of living whippersnappers coming along behind me and changing things beyond recognition.

alejandromb92
01-31-2021, 05:33 PM
So i will be U-BY711... I don't like it!

MitchellSince1893
01-31-2021, 05:34 PM
...But how many branches would result in a new RA type designation. 5,000, 2,000 or 1,000 ? At 5,000, only P312 and L21 would qualify. At 2,000, U106 and
DF27 would be added. This methodology should be driven only but quantity of branches. At 1,000 testers, U152 and DF49 would be added. But then you get
into branches below these larger haplogroups. DF13 should not receive a letter since it only removes 173 branches from L21. Z2265 has 3,521 branches but
this branch only removes five branches from U106. I vote for 2,000 branches to qualify and at least 2,000 branches must remain in the father as well. This
would result in only five branches under R. RA would be M207 to L151 - 3,852 branches. RB would be U106 with 3,528 branches. RC would be P312 (less
L21 and DF27) - 6,798 branches. RD - L21 would be 6,543 branches. RE would be DF27 with 2,312. U152 would probably later become RF as it is approaching
2,000 branches but currently has only 1,527 branches.
Canít say Iím a fan of this as this system doesnít show important structural connections. Ie DF27 and U152 are brother clades under ZZ11 is lost. That ZZ11 is a brother clade to DF99 under Z404101 is lost.

rms2
01-31-2021, 05:43 PM
I am about ready to convert to the FTDNA standard for several reasons:

1) It confuses people who are new to have two conflicting standards.

That I agree with. A single standard is better, so FTDNA should start using R1a and R1b in the shorthand instead of just R.



2) Sure, R1a is quick way to rule out R1b but then you have R, R1, R2 and several intermediate branches.

I'm not sure why that's a problem. There are also many haplogroups besides R.



3) Only saves two characters - but just to filter out R1a ?? Not worth it . . .

It costs just an extra two characters to make things clearer: absolutely worth it.

Ever see a Y-DNA profile here at Anthrogenica (below the screenname, avatar, etc.) in which the member uses the FTDNA, single-letter version of the shorthand, R-something, and wonder whether he means R1a or R1b?

It makes a difference, and it's nice to know.

MitchellSince1893
01-31-2021, 05:56 PM
R1b is too embedded in literature, wiki pages etc to toss out.
A system that identifies important/prolific markers may be a compromise

R1b-_____ fill in the blank depending on the situation and the audience

In my situation it might be something like

R1b-FGC12384 if the in-between structure isn’t important to the discussion.

R1b-P312>>U152>L2>>FGC12384 if it’s important to the audience/discussion to show which branch of U152 I’m under and that U152 is under P312.
“>>” implies a multiple number of branches down.

Just my 2 cents.

rms2
01-31-2021, 06:01 PM
R1b is too embedded in literature, wiki pages etc to toss out.
A system that identifies important/prolific markers may be a compromise

R1b-_____ fill in the blank depending on the situation and the audience

In my situation it might be something like

R1b-FGC12384 if the in-between structure isn’t important to the discussion.

R1b-P312>>U152>L2>>FGC12384 if it’s important to the audience/discussion to show which branch of U152 I’m under and that U152 is under P312.
“>>” implies a multiple number of branches down.

Just my 2 cents.

I second that (not that my endorsement matters).

JMcB
01-31-2021, 06:14 PM
I’m with rms2 on this. The notion that they can’t take the time or the characters, to differentiate between R1a and R1b or I1 and 12 is absurd and slightly annoying. Especially, if you happened to be in one those Haplogroups. I notice this every time FT releases one of their new subclade reports. Where they don’t differentiate between I1 and I2. Which renders the report totally useless, as far as I’m concerned.

rms2
01-31-2021, 06:18 PM
I’m with rms2 on this. The notion that they can take the time or the characters, to differentiate between R1a and R1b or I1 and 12 is absurd and slightly annoying. Especially, if you happened to be in one those Haplogroups. I notice this every time FT releases one of their new subclade reports. Where they don’t differentiate between I1 and I2. Which renders the report totally useless, as far as I’m concerned.

Right, and there's quite a bit of difference in the distribution and ancient histories of I1 and I2 (not that I'm an expert on either).

JMcB
01-31-2021, 06:26 PM
Right, and there's quite a bit of difference in the distribution and ancient histories of I1 and I2 (not that I'm an expert on either).

Indeed! Which also applies R1a and R1b, from what I’ve seen.

Wing Genealogist
01-31-2021, 07:33 PM
Another possible advantage of creating a major change is that it would hopefully force the academics to utilize a more updated phylogenetic tree. Most papers are still using the 2015 or 2016 version of the ISOGG tree, although a couple have started using the newest 2019/20 tree. Just trying to figure out which version of the ISOGG tree a paper is using has become a real pain.

I like RobertCasey's use of RA-R? to subdivide personally, but we may want to start with R1a becoming the RA and something akin to M239 becoming RB.

The use of Next Generation Sequence/Whole Genome Sequence (NGS/WGS) testing has created a tsunami of clades, and a major reorganization would clearly benefit the community.

rms2
01-31-2021, 09:41 PM
I am really against any major name changes. Really. Major nomenclature changes would not reduce the number of SNPs or branches. Such changes would simply re-organize everything under new monikers, and, in my opinion, screw things up to a fare-thee-well.

I would be happy if the academics started utilizing the shorthand and jettisoned the longhand altogether, which would make the latest version of ISOGG pretty much irrelevant, as long as the academics have some up-to-date phylogenetic tree that acts as a source of Y-DNA SNPs, like FTDNA's Haplotree.

Wing Genealogist
02-01-2021, 04:07 PM
As much as we would like to have academics switch over the the SNP-based clade name, it doesn't appear to be happening.

Given the HUGE amount of information gathered since the current YCC nomenclature was created, I do feel that a major change is long overdue. I think about the older Dewey Decimal library system and how it was changed to the Library of Congress system. While there was a LOT of opposition to this initially, the library system has (by and large) changed to reflect the vast quantity of information (which the Dewey Decimal system was no longer able to handle).

It is entirely possible this new system may be the SNP-based clade name we are currently using, but it is also possible a major revamp of the old system, or a completely new system may be needed. One huge advantage of the old system was that it allowed a fairly easy path to trace the parent clades & subclades. As such, a modified system (such as proposed by Robert Casey) may fit the bill, IMHO.

Dewsloth
02-01-2021, 05:05 PM
Anyone who has even a passing familiarity with Y-DNA haplogroup notation knows how cumbersome the longhand version is. For example, here is the 2020 ISOGG rendition of R1b-DF41: R1b1a1b1a1a2c1a1d.


House R1b1a2a1a1b5 (2012) I mean House R1b1a1b1a1a2e1(2020) ... er ... whatever ISOGG nightmare is next for DF19>DF88, we stand with you! And my axe...

It's not just that nomenclature is cumbersome, it's that they change it even while academic publications are using it and not always making it obvious which version they use. :angry:

rms2
02-01-2021, 06:37 PM
As much as we would like to have academics switch over the the SNP-based clade name, it doesn't appear to be happening.

Given the HUGE amount of information gathered since the current YCC nomenclature was created, I do feel that a major change is long overdue. I think about the older Dewey Decimal library system and how it was changed to the Library of Congress system. While there was a LOT of opposition to this initially, the library system has (by and large) changed to reflect the vast quantity of information (which the Dewey Decimal system was no longer able to handle).

It is entirely possible this new system may be the SNP-based clade name we are currently using, but it is also possible a major revamp of the old system, or a completely new system may be needed. One huge advantage of the old system was that it allowed a fairly easy path to trace the parent clades & subclades. As such, a modified system (such as proposed by Robert Casey) may fit the bill, IMHO.

We're going to continue to disagree about this.

Sure, there's been a huge increase in information, but making a major change in the nomenclature won't reduce it. It'll just regroup it all under different headings, which I do not see as helpful.

Wing Genealogist
02-02-2021, 11:43 AM
I am entirely comfortable with agreeing to disagree on this (and any other) issue. :beerchug:

IMHO, the fact there has been a huge increase in information is precisely why major changes should be explored. While it won't reduce the change, it may help reduce the current confusion caused by the constant changes in the old system. Unlike you, I do see this as helpful.

rms2
02-02-2021, 02:57 PM
Big changes would only confuse things without reducing the actual size and complexity of the tree and would render past scientific papers indecipherable without some sort of companion guidebook to the changes or "Google Translate" app.

Besides that, as I mentioned before, some of us are kind of attached to the names of our haplogroups. I don't want well-meaning do-gooders to come along and screw that up.

In my experience, almost nothing is worse than someone who wants to do something against your will to you for your own good.

MitchellSince1893
02-02-2021, 05:33 PM
Just to give a feel for what we are talking about on how widespread r1b is in scientific papers.
A search for R1b in google scholar



A major Y-chromosome haplogroup R1b Holocene era founder effect in Central and Western Europe
cited 273 times


Haplogroup prediction from Y-STR values using an allele-frequency approachCited 106 times


Human Y chromosome haplogroup R-V88: a paternal genetic record of early mid Holocene trans-Saharan connections and the spread of Chadic languages Cited 124 times


Haplogroup prediction from Y-STR values using a Bayesian-allele-frequency approachCited 160 times


Massive migration from the steppe was a source for Indo-European languages in EuropeCited 1221 times


The Beaker phenomenon and the genomic transformation of northwest Europe Cited 326 times


Neolithic and Bronze Age migration to Ireland and establishment of the insular Atlantic genomeCited 185 times


Human Y-chromosome variation in the genome-sequencing eraCited 95 times

Off topic but, This is only cited 2 times looks interesting

Possible correlation between COVID-19 contagion and Y-DNA Haplogroup R1b
S Schillaci - 2020

R1b has been used since ~2000. https://kuscholarworks.ku.edu/handle/1808/16277

Expecting the scientific community to now switch to something else after 20+ years of use, doesn't appear to be realistic. From this perspective it appears the "R1b" boat has already set sail.

MitchellSince1893
02-02-2021, 06:28 PM
Right, and there's quite a bit of difference in the distribution and ancient histories of I1 and I2 (not that I'm an expert on either).


Before a reclassification in 2008,[19] the group (I1) was known as I1a, a name that has since been reassigned to a primary branch, haplogroup I-DF29. The other primary branches of I1 (M253) are I1b (S249/Z131) and I1c (Y18119/Z17925).

Haplogroup I-M438, also known aka I2 was known as I1b prior to 2008.
That's a great example of the confusion caused when some one decides to switch things up. I have had multiple occasions where this switch has caused me confusion when doing research on my maternal grandfather's y-dna group (currently I2 aka old I1b). I have to remind myself of when the switch occurred and research which version of ISOGG said source is using.

rms2
02-02-2021, 07:49 PM
. . .

Expecting the scientific community to now switch to something else after 20+ years of use, doesn't appear to be realistic. From this perspective it appears the "R1b" boat has already set sail.

Thank God!

Long may it prove seaworthy!