DNA ancestry tests are bullshit

Adam Rutherford's amazing book A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived is on shelves in the USA now; debunking the absurd claims made by genetics testing companies -- claims about your distant relationship to ancient kings or the percentage of your genes that came from Vikings. Read the rest

Woman shocked when her DNA test reveals biological father isn't her father, but her parents' fertility doctor

When a couple told their doctor they were moving out of town, the doctor reacted in an unusual way – he cried. Maybe his odd response was due to the fact that, unbeknownst to the couple, the doctor was the biological father to their young daughter, Kelli Rowlette.

Let's fast forward. Rowlette, from Washington state, recently took a DNA test with Ancestry.com, only to find out her father wasn't her biological father. In fact, Ancestry said her bio dad was a doctor named Gerald Mortimer who lived 500 miles away. This was so surprising that she told her mother that Ancestry had got it wrong.

What she didn't know was that her parents had gone to the same Doctor Mortimer in the 1980s, and her mother had undergone artificial insemination with both her father's sperm and that of an "anonymous donor" who was supposedly a 6-foot tall college student with brown hair and blue eyes (which the doctor was not). The parents had kept the artificial insemination a secret from their daughter, while the doctor had kept the fact that he and their daughter shared the same DNA a secret.

Even after the DNA test revealed that Rowlette's biological father was not her father, Rowlette's mom kept mum.

According to The Seattle Times:

But several months later, Rowlette discovered the shocking truth on her own.

In August, Rowlette was helping to sort through her parents’ old papers when she ran across her birth certificate. It had been signed by the doctor who delivered her — Gerald Mortimer.

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Best friends for 60 years learn they're biological brothers through DNA site

This is a truly heartwarming story.

As a way to find his father, a man in Hawaii took an Ancestry.com DNA test. He soon discovered he shared the same birth mother as someone else using the site: his best friend of 60 years.

Now in their 60s, Walter Macfarlane and Alan Robinson of Oahu recently learned that they are half-brothers. The men, both born and raised in Hawaii, are 15 months apart in age and used to play football together in high school. Macfarlane says that he and Robinson have been playing cribbage together all their lives.

KHON reports:

Macfarlane never knew his father, and Robinson was adopted.

With the help of his family, Macfarlane searched for answers over the years through the internet and social media with no luck so they turned to family DNA matching websites.

“So then we started digging into all the matches he started getting,” Cindy Macfarlane-Flores, Macfarlane’s daughter, explained.

At the top of the list of DNA matches was the username Robi737.

The results showed Macfarlane and robi737 had several matches in their DNA including identical X chromosomes.

Here’s where Robinson comes in.

“As a nickname everybody called him Robi and he flew 737s for Aloha Airlines, he was a pilot,” Macfarlane-Flores says.

It turns out Robinson had also used Ancestry.com to find answers about his family.

After a few phone calls back and forth, the men learned they shared the same birth mother.

“It was a shock,” Macfarlane said.

“Yea it was shock, definitely and then we thought about it and compared forearms,” Robinson said.

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