Are you ready to trace your genetic history?

The Houston Chronicle’s science blogger Eric Berger has a post about new genetic testing that will provide information about someone’s racial heritage, likely including traces of mixed race heritage in many people where it may not have been suspected based on physical appearance and family.  I’m sure this isn’t an original observation, but it will be interesting to see if any there are any legal challenges to affirmative action programs that purport to equalize opportunities among people from different racial groups. If someone who previously was not considered a member of a minority group can prove through genetic testing to have had ancestors, however remote, from a minority group, would there be legal justification to deny them the benefits of such a program?

SciGuy: Are you ready to trace your genetic history?

For just a few hundred bucks you can obtain a DNA analysis that yields a basic racial profile — European, Asian or Native American. For a little more, a deeper test can determine what specific region of the world your ancestors hail from. The answers can be both revealing and worldview-shattering

. . .

This type of activity will only increase in the future as testing costs continue to plummet and processing power to analyze the results also falls. Within a decade, and perhaps less, it will likely be possible to create “statistical” family trees that rival carefully crafted genealogical family trees. As databases increase in size the precision will only continue to get better.

What does this mean? Well, we’re going to find out there was a lot of sex between races in the past. (I know, big surprise!) Lots of families are also going to dig out buried secrets.

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One Response

  1. DNA Paternity Testing

    More DNA Paternity Testing info

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