One of the best reasons to upload your DNA to Gedmatch Genesis is that you can have access to some really neat admixture calculators. In this post, we’ll learn a little bit about those calculators, and how to understand your Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Estimates. It’s important to know that the admixture results on Gedmatch Genesis are the same as the ones available on the regular Gedmatch site, so the results won’t differ.
Who makes the Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculators?
Each admixture calculator is based on research projects done by independent researchers. They have made their research available to be interpreted by the Gedmatch Genesis software for comparison with your DNA. On the results page after use of each calculator, there is typically a link to the researcher’s website or contact information. The researchers typically focus on one particular part of the world, which means that there are specific calculators that are more or less useful depending on where most of your ancestry comes from.
I like to refer to admixture calculators as “alternative ethnicity estimates” or “second opinions”. It’s a free and easy way to see if your testing company missed something in your DNA ethnicity that is interesting to you. The reason that these alternative admixture calculators might (and will probably) vary from the ethnicity estimate that your testing company provided you is because the reference samples will be different. The Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculators might be based on larger, smaller, different, or more specific reference samples. Additionally, the researcher who designed the project might break down regions in different ways, group areas together differently, or just use different vocabulary to describe them.
An example of an ethnicity that Ancestry DNA does not currently test for, but shows on Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculators?
If you have Basque ancestry, or suspect that you do, it won’t show up on Ancestry DNA. Hopefully, they will add the ability to test for this in the future, but for now, if you want to find out if you have some Basque DNA, you will have to upload to Gedmatch Genesis and use the admixture calculators there. I ran my DNA through the Eurogenes K36 calculator to show you two interesting things about the results:
In the image above, you will notice two things:
- The calculator shows that I have 1.55% Basque ancestry (Interestingly, my mother has 2.93% using this calculator)
- There is a word on there that not many people are familiar with (Fennoscandian). This is a great example of researchers using different or more specific vocabulary to describe areas. Fennoscandia is basically the Scandinavian Peninsula.
For the record, my ethnicity breakdown on this admixture calculator is very different than my Ancestry DNA results. I will have to use more traditional genealogy combined with DNA matches in order to determine my “true” family tree. (See DNA Matches and Genealogy for some strategies)
How to use the Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculators
After you’ve uploaded your DNA to Gedmatch Genesis, you will be ready to explore the tools Gedmatch Genesis has to offer. Even before your One-to-Many matches have populated, you can use the admixture tools.
From the main dashboard, just pick the “Admixture (heritage)” link to the tool:
The basic admixture tool is all you need for now. Once you get more comfortable, you can explore some of the more advanced admixture functionality. Once you are on the main screen of the tool, just pick the calculator that you would like to use (the little drop down menu will open up if you click the down arrow):
For now, just pick the project name and leave it as “Admixture Proportions”. If you feel comfortable, you can look at the individual chromosome information, chromosome painting, or even differences between two Gedmatch kits – topics for another day on this blog.
Once you pick the project you want to use, you need to pick the specific calculator model. Each model has different inputs and are useful for different situations, depending on what you are looking for. In the last section of this article, I will give you some suggestions for the type of admixture calculator to use. In the image below, you can see how to access the specific calculator model for the Calculator type that you chose:
Once you’ve entered all of the information and press continue, the calculator should start to run. It takes anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes to return your results, depending on how many people are using the site and your internet connection. On your results screen, you should see a spreadsheet-type breakdown, with percentages, along with a pie chart to help you visualize your results.
Which Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculators should you use?
As I mentioned previously, your unique ancestry will guide your choice of admixture project and calculator on Gedmatch Genesis. Below, I will recommend different calculators based on several different types of ancestry. This post focuses on teasing out more recent ancestry (like in the past 500 years, or so), so the calculators that I recommend I have found most helpful for that purpose. There are certain projects and calculator models that can be used to find how much DNA you have inherited from ancient populations, but discussion of them is beyond the scope of this post – topics for another day!
The best way to approach using these calculators is to run your DNA through a few different calculators and compare the results. If your DNA testing company, along with a few different calculators, are picking up on a particular ancestry, it might be worth your attention to explore it more completely.
Most useful Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculators for people with African ancestry
- EthioHelix K10 (100% African ancestry only)
- For African and European mixed ancestry, EthioHelix K10 + French
Most useful Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculators for people with European Ancestry, including Basque
- MDLP K16 Modern
- MDLP World22
- Eurogenes K36
Most useful Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculator for people with South Asian or West Asian ancestry
- Harrapaworld (there is only one calculator available for this project)
- For mixed European/Asian or Asian/African ancestry, try the Dodecad K12b calculator
Most useful Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculators for people trying to locate Native American ancestry
- MDLP World22
- Eurogenes K36
Most useful Gedmatch Genesis Admixture Calculators for people from Latin America with Native American plus European and African Ancestry
- Eurogenes EUtest V2 K15
- Eurogenes K36
If you don’t see your particular ancestry on this list, no worries! Just play around with a few different ones that I list here, which I find are some of the easiest to understand, and compare your results. See what makes the most sense based on what you know about your family’s ancestry. It should be stressed that ethnicity estimates, including these admixture calculators, are only part of the puzzle and should not be used to conclude or discard any other type of information that you learn about your family tree. That’s why I love to repeat that these are only estimates, and should be understood as such.
I hope that this post helped you understand the Admixture tool on Gedmatch Genesis, and how to use it. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, I would love to hear from you in the comments.
Thanks for stopping by!