23andMe Results: Kalonji’s Ancestry Painting

Continuing my posts on our 23andMe testing, I continue with a brief description of Kalonji’s Ancestry Painting and what we’ve learned from it.

The Ancestry Painting is a feature of 23andMe that shows an analysis of the 22 non-sex chromosomes we inherit from our parents.  The result is a beautifully colored image that illustrates DNA segments and gives a report of if the DNA is likely inherited from Africa, Europe or Asia.

The first part of the Ancestry Painting gives the overall breakdown.  Apparently, Kalonji’s DNA is 78% African origin, 21% European origin and 4% Native American (shows up as Asian but is very likely Native American or else statistical noise).

It is not uncommon for African-Americans to have 20% or more European DNA given our history of slavery, so the results were not really surprising.  What I found most interesting about the painting was the distribution of the European DNA.  If a DNA segment is bi-colored, it means each of the chromosome pairs came from different parents.  From reading blog posts from 23andMe, I learned that the coloring is consistent in that the top half of the chromosoume represents one parent, while the bottom half represents the other.  23andMe cannot tell you which half is which parent, but clues in a person’s family history may provide that.   In this case, it was true for Kalonji.

When you look at the Ancestry painting, it is clear that one half of all the chromosomes contains more European DNA than the other half for there are more blue segments on the bottom halves of the 22 than their are on the top.  This is consistent with what we know of Kalonji’s paternal ancestry and that of all of Kalonji’s 2nd great-grandparents, we are fairly sure that one of them in particular was white and he was on Kalonji’s paternal side (see previous posts on Kalonji’s McClellan ancestry).  Given Kalonji’s father’s complexion, paternal grandmother’s complexion, and her father’s complexion and features, we are pretty sure most of the European DNA is coming from that lineage.  Thus, we hypothesize that the bottom halves of the Ancestry painting are the portrait of DNA Kalonji inherited from his father.   We kinda knew this already, but it was neat to see it in the DNA analysis. :-)

2 thoughts on “23andMe Results: Kalonji’s Ancestry Painting

  1. Have you done any other tests like Familytreedna’s Populationfinder or Africanancestry.com’s Mydnamix or the old Ancestrybydna2.5 from Dnaprintgenomics/Dnadiagnosticscenter? If so,what were the results? I’ve never done any of these tests but I entered my email on October 1st on 23andme’s site to be notified of registration for RootsintotheFuture but still havent heard from them, I hadnt heard of RootsintotheFuture when it came out in late July and I hope I wasnt too late.

  2. Hi Anthony,

    No, I have not yet tested with any other genealogy company. As for 23andMe, to the best of my knowledge they are not taking new requests right now, but they may open it back up in the future. Keep your eye on your email. You could also join a Facebook group about DNA testing as announcements may be likely to be posted there. For example, the DNA Tested African Descendants is a good one – http://www.facebook.com/groups/DNAAfricans/.

Leave a Reply