More Genetic Genealogy in the News!


I was being completely serious yesterday. I can barely keep up with all the genetic genealogy in the news, so here’s yet another round-up of the all the latest:

Sorenson Genomics is everywhere in the news. For example, a recent article in the Daily Herald discusses Scott Woodward’s love of genetics. Woodward is the Director and Chief Scientific Officer of the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation. Megan Smolenyak wrote about this article at Megan’s Roots World. Sorenson also announced that it will merge the Identigene and GeneTree DNA testing units (HT: Genome Technology Online).

Jasia at Creative Gene discusses some of the financial costs associated with genetic genealogy. It appears that this will be a series of posts, and I’m very interested to see how the costs compare to traditional genealogical research. Note that Creative Gene is a member of The Genealogists, a Feedburner Network of some of today’s best genealogical blogs.

DNA Decoding Maps Mainstream Future” is an article from the Wall Street Journal that analysizes the stiff competition for the $10,000, or $1000, or even the $100 genome. Four major contenders are identified, including “Illumina Inc., of San Diego; Applera Corp.’s Applied Biosystems unit in Foster City, Calif.; Roche Holding AG’s 454 Life Sciences in Branford, Conn.; and Helicos BioSciences Corp., of Cambridge, Mass.” (HT: Scienceroll):

“It currently costs between $300,000 and $3 million to sequence a genome. But with better chemicals and faster computers, the companies say, the cost will fall to $10,000 within a few years.”

Hsien at Eye On DNA has a podcast of Dr. George Church in “Futures in Biotech.” As you know, Dr. Church is the head of the Personal Genome Project, and one of the “First 10.”

Scot to Bring DNA From Russia With Lermentov” is an article from which discusses Bryan Sykes’ plan to prove a link between Scots with the surname Learmonth, and Russians with the surname Lermentov. According to Sykes, up to 250,000 Russians may have Scottish blood:

“Russia now has thousands of Lermontovs. The Lermontov Society, founded 15 years ago, believes they are descended from George Learmonth, a Scottish adventurer who fought for the Poles but was captured by Russian forces in the late 17th century. As a mercenary soldier, he swapped sides and decided to stay on in Russia, where he married and started a family.

The Learmonth heraldic crest, first registered in Scotland in 1672, has very similar characteristics to the Lermontov crest, which first appeared in 1782. George’s descendants are likely to have changed their name to fit in with Russian society.”

A very interesting article, and yet another example of using genetic genealogy to answer real-life historical questions. (HT: Hsien).

So there you are, all the latest news in genetic genealogy!