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 DNA Genealogy

 

DNA studies can be used to categorise genealogical groups sharing one common ancestor at one given point in prehistory, through the study of haplogroups. There are two kinds of haplogroups: the paternally inherited Y-chromosome DNA (Y-DNA) haplogroups (i.e. through the male line), and the maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplogroups (i.e. through the female line).

 

Depending on the depth of analysis, the Y-DNA can determine whether two apparently unrelated individuals sharing the same surname do indeed descend from a common ancestor in a not too distant past (3 to 20 generations) or through deeper analysis identify the ancient ethnic group to which one's ancestors belonged (e.g. Celtic, Germanic, Slavic, Greco-Roman, Basque, Iberian, Phoenician, Jewish, etc.).

 

In Europe, mtDNA haplogroups are quite evenly spread over the continent, and therefore cannot be associated easily with ancient ethnicities. However, they can sometimes reveal some potential medical conditions.

 

The following is a ‘sample’ of the genetic make-up of the Y-DNA Haplogroup in Ireland:

 

Ireland

79

R1b Celtic Basque

7

I1 Nordic Germanic

4

I2b Saxon Germanic

3

R1a Slavic

2

I2a Slavic

2

E3B Greek

1.5

J1 Jewish

1

G Caucasian

 

The R1b Haplogroup is thought to be the direct descendant of Cro-Magnon, the oldest Homo-Sapiens settlers in Europe. It is by far the most common in Western Europe, reaching over 90% of the population in some parts of western France, northern Spain or Ireland. The highest concentration of the Celtic R1b mutation (over 50) by whole country in Europe are:

 

Wales              82%

Ireland            79%

Scotland          72.5%

Netherlands     70.5%

Spain               70%

England           67%

France             61%

Portugal           56%

Belgium           55%

 

Denmark, Germany, Switzerland and Italy also have high concentrations. This roughly equates to Western Europe minus the Nordic countries. The R1b haplogroup can further classified to determine the movement of populations over time. R1b1b2a1b6a/R1b1b2a1b6b/ R1b1b2a1b6c (R1b1c1 or R1b1c7) arrived in Ireland 3000 to 2500 years ago.

 

Ref:

Origins, age, spread and ethnic association of European haplogroups and subclades

http://www.eupedia.com/europe/origins_haplogroups_europe.shtml

Distribution of European Y-chromosome DNA (Y-DNA) haplogroups by region in percentage

http://www.eupedia.com/europe/european_y-dna_haplogroups.shtml

International Society of Genetic Genealogy (ISOGG)

http://www.isogg.org/

 

It is important to check the number of markers that will be tested before choosing a test. For example, the Genographic Project looks at only 12 markers, while most laboratories and surname projects recommend testing at least 25. The more markers that are tested, the more discriminating and powerful the results will be. A 12 marker STR test is usually not discriminating enough to provide conclusive results for a common surname. STRs results may also indicate a likely haplogroup, though this can only be confirmed by specifically testing for that Haplogroups' single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). The test results are then compared to another project member's results to determine the time frame in which the two people shared a most recent common ancestor (MRCA). If the two tests match on 37 markers, there is a 50% probability that the MRCA was fewer than 5 generations ago and a 90% probability that the MRCA was fewer than 17 generations ago.

 

DNA samples were collected from 1,125 Irish men, bearing 43 different Gaelic surnames. On average, a man has a 30-fold increased chance of sharing a 17 STR Y-chromosome haplotype with another man of the same surname but the extent of similarity between the surname and haplotype varies widely between surnames which is attributed this to differences in the number of early founders. Some surnames such as O’Sullivan and Ryan have a single major ancestor, whereas others like Murphy and Kelly have numerous founders probably explaining their high frequency today. Notwithstanding differences in their early origins, all surnames have been extensively affected by later male introgession. None examined showed more than about half of current bearers still descended from one original founder indicating dynamic and continuously evolving kinship groupings. Mutation rates are not available for all loci, therefore weighting was instead based on the variance in repeat score amongst 985 Y-chromosomes within the discrete R1b3 haplogroup. (McEvoy et al)

 

There are not enough results with sufficient deails fot the Tracey surname to make conclusions but it would appear, as expected, that the majority of results are of Irish origin with some Norman-Nordic and Anglo-Saxon results. There may be a lineage connection for the DYS392=11 mutation, as explained below.

 

In the Tracy DNA project, there are 27 results for ‘Tracy’ with the following haplogroups:

 

E1b1a (1)

I2a (2)

R1b1 (1)

R1b1a2 (R-M269) (17)

R1b1a2a1a1b4 (R-L21) (4)

R1b1a2a1a1b4h (L226) (2)

http://www.worldfamilies.net/surnames/tracy

 

All the R1b Traceys have these two markers in common; No. 6, DYS426=12 which has an incidence of 2% for R1b and No.9. DYS3891=13, which has an incidence of 15% for R1b. However, I have been told that neither of those mutations is particularly significant, especially for R-L21 members.

http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~geneticgenealogy/yfreq.htm

 

As testing procedures progress, it is possible to further determine the detail of the haplogroup. The following are the results of further testing:

 

R1b1a2 (FTDNA) (R-M269) = R1b1a2 (ISOGG)
R1b1a2a1a1b4 (FTDNA) (L21) = R1b1a2a1a2c (ISOGG)

R1b1a2a1a1b4h (FTDNA) (L226) = R1b1a2a1a2c1f2a (ISOGG)

 

In the Ireland Y-DNA Project, there is the additional result for Treacy and Tracy with the following haplogroup: R1b1b2 (1) I2b1 (1).

 

On Ysearch there are also nine results with following haplogroups: R1b* (Cork Ireland), R1b1b2 (Great Yarmouth, England), R1b1b2a1b (Ireland), R1b1b2a1b5 (Wexford, Ireland), I2a (Limerick Ireland), G (Unknown).

http://www.ysearch.org

 

Would you like to join the Tracy DNA Project?

 

The Tracy DNA Project is located at http://www.worldfamilies.net/surnames/tracy/home

 

The majority of Traceys in the world are of Irish descent. According to the ancient Irish genealogies they are decended from four tribes which were located in the four provinces of Ireland. There are also the Traceys who came to Ireland from England.

 

By joining the project, you will be providing information which will build up the picture of our ancient descent. Also you will be helping others to determine where in Ireland their ancestors came from. Joining the project is easy and the tests at Family Tree DNA cost $20 to $30 less when you order them through a surname project. There is also a greater variety of tests available. You can particepate at any level and then upgrade to a higher level if you wish. Further testing can then also be performed to get more detail on the haplogroup.

 

In order to generate the best information possible, particepants should indicate their earlist known ancestor and location in Ireland. If you require any assistance, please contact the website info@traceyclann.com

 

In the Griffiths Primary Valuation property survey of 1848-64, the following are the rough percentages of Tracey households living in each county:

 

Antrim

Armagh

Carlow

Cavan

Clare

Cork

Derry

Donegal

0.5%

0%

3%

1%

1.%%

3.5%

2%

1%

Down

Dublin

Fermanagh

Galway

Kerry

Kildare

Kilkenny

Laois

0.5%

3%

3.5%

10%

0.5%

3.5%

6%

4%

Leitrim

Limerick

Longford

Louth

Mayo

Meath

Monaghan

Offaly

1%

5.5%

1%

1%

1%

1%

0.5%

5%

Roscommon

Sligo

Tipperary

Tyrone

Waterford

Westmeath

Wexford

Wicklow

3%

0.5%

25%

2.5%

3.5%

1.5%

2%

2.5%

 

Ref:

Ireland yDNA Project http://homepage.eircom.net/~ihdp/ihdp/index.htm

McEvoy, Brian & Bradley, Daniel G. (2006) Y-chromosomes and the extent of patrilineal ancestry in Irish surnames. Hum Genet. http://homepage.eircom.net/~ihdp/ihdp/documents/ydna_irish_surnames.pdf

McEvoy, Brian; Simms, Katharine and Bradley, Daniel G. (2008) Genetic Investigation of the Patrilineal Kinship Structure of Early Medieval Ireland. American Journal of Physical Anthropology. http://homepage.eircom.net/~ihdp/ihdp/documents/fulltext.pdf

McEwan, John (2006) R1b1c7 haplogroup M222 SNP aka North West Irish Variety, IMH and R1bSTR19Irish http://www.geocities.com/mcewanjc/M222.htm

O’Neill, Edwin B. and  McLaughlin, John D. (2006) Insights Into the O’Neills of Ireland from DNA Testing. Journal of Genetic Genealogy 2:18-26,  http://www.jogg.info/22/ONeill.pdf

 

 

Irish Tribal Clusters

 

In the ancient Irish genealogies of the Bairrche tribe, the Treasaich and Mac Gormáin families belonged to the royal family and were related. Some members of the Tracy and Gorman DNA Projects contain a very rare mutation, DYS392=11. According to Seán MacGorman Powell, the Gorman Project Administrator, after a careful analyses of all DYS392=11 mutation bearers in every major geographical DNA project examined, he identified a total of 79 people worldwide within the R1b haplogroup (and subclades) who bear this mutation. Considering that tens of thousands of R1b people have been tested, it is clear that this represents an extremely rare mutation for R1b, occurring in less than one-half of one percent (< 0.5%) of that major haplogroup. As such, this may be a strong indication of a DNA relationship and may explain the reference to "Macraith, son of Gorman, son of Treasach" in the Annals of the Four Masters for the year 1042 AD. Seán has also compared the Gormans and Tracys who have the DYS392=11 mutation and in his opinion, there is no relation between the two groups outside of the mutation.

 

Also, within this group of DYS392=11, two members have been tested as belonging to the R1b1a2a1a1b4h haplogroup.

 

It would appear that the DYS392=11 mutation in the USA comes from a common ancestor, Teague Trassey who emigrated to Virginia around 1655, and whose ancestry has been very well documented.

 

Ref:

Gorman DNA Project: http://www.worldfamilies.net/surnames/gorman/disc

History of the Barriche tribe: http://www.traceyclann.com/files/Ui%20Bairrche.htm

 

 

The following are Irish Tribal Cluster projects:

 

NW Irish haplogroup (R-M222) and Irish Type III consider that they have distinctive markers that relate to their clans or tribes.

 

The North-West (NW) Irish is the signature of the Néill tribe http://www.familytreedna.com/public/R1b1c7/default.aspx

 

Irish Type III is the signature of the Dál gCáis (west Munster). www.jogg.info/51/files/Wright.pdf  and www.irishtype3dna.org

 

Last update: 13 December 2013