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# Thursday, September 11, 2008
Familybuilder Announces Low-Cost DNA Tests; Global Network
Posted by Diane

Two big announcements from Familybuilder, the company that created the Family Tree genealogy application for social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace.
  • First, Familybuilder’s new Global Network brings the Family Tree application outside of social networking sites.
Anyone can create a Family Tree profile on Familybuilder and link it to Family Tree profiles on social networking sites. (More than 20 million Family Tree profiles exist on such sites.) You’ll need a free registration to build a tree or access existing ones. 
  • Second, starting Oct. 15, Familybuilder will offer low-cost DNA tests, focusing on the social networking market. According to a written announcement, “No genealogy service caters to the 300 to 400 million people who use social networks to research their family trees.”
The offerings include a 17-marker Y-DNA test and a mitochondrial (mt) DNA test; both cost $59.95.

FamilyBuilder does have others beat: Compare its 17-marker test with FamilyTreeDNA’s 12-marker test ($149); DNA Testing Systems’ 13-marker test ($200); Chromosomal Labs’ 19-marker test is $260.

A 17-marker test is usually enough to tell you if you’re related to someone, but higher-resolution tests (those that test more markers) are more accurate. For example, it’s possible a 17-marker test may match on 15 of the 17 markers, where a 45-marker test of the same two people might match on 30 out of the 45 markers.

Note that a Y-DNA test doesn’t tell you how you’re related to someone; but it estimates how long ago a common ancestor may have lived.

Many genealogists go straight for the higher-marker tests (my guess is that's the market most traditional genetic genealogy companies concentrate on). Familybuilder says it plans to expand its DNA lineup and is “committed to continuously driving the costs of these tests down over time.”

Genealogy Web Sites | Genetic Genealogy
Thursday, September 11, 2008 5:27:33 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [3]