DNA Consultants’ blog

Read reviews of science articles, new research and news reports on ancestry testing, ancient DNA and popular genetics

US, EU Move to Regulate Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Testing


Discussion is accelerating in the United States and European Union to regulate private genomic testing that provides consumers medical information, according to Science magazine and the European Journal of Human Genetics. No mention is made in the reams of white papers about ancestry testing, but some of the pitfalls and bureaucratic morasses in the thinking about true genetic/medical testing are fairly ominous, if not silly.

Elizabeth Rex


Like Egyptian Queen Hapshepsut, who wore the royal beard in portraits, Queen Elizabeth I was careful to refer to herself as a “prince,” not “princess,” and sign her name Elizabeth R. (the Rstanding for Rex, “king”).

When Ireland Was Jewish


The royal mound cemetery at Taillten, modern Telltown in County Meath, houses the burials of numerous kings and nobles from early Ireland. These begin with Ollamh Fodhla, whose death occurred in 1277 B.C.E., and run to just before Conchobar Mac Ness, who died in A.D. 33 according to the Annals of Tighernach, written in Old Irish and Latin in the early Middle Ages. Pronounced “CON ah war,” Conchobar is the first of the name Connor or O’Connor in Irish annals. His mother was Queen Ness, and his nephew Cuchulain, the famous hero of the Ulster cycle of stories.

Book Deal: Star, Crescent and Cross


Jews and Muslims in Colonial America
After more than eight years in development, a book contract was awarded to Elizabeth Caldwell Hirschman and Donald N. Yates for their collaborative study of Crypto-Jews and Crypto-Muslims in the settlement of British North America. Titled Star, Crescent and Cross:  Jews and Muslims in Colonial America, the work will be published next year by McFarland, a leading U.S. publisher of scholarly, reference and academic books.

From Matriarchy to Patriarchy: Year 3000 BCE


The Greatest Divide in Human Genealogy and History

You hear a lot of talk about the Neolithic Revolution–the gradual adoption and spread of agriculture, animal husbandry and town life by our prehistoric European ancestors–but the most important epoch in the course of civilization goes largely unnoticed in the history books. That was the abrupt shift from matriarchy and worship of the Great Goddess to the warrior-based governments and language stocks of the steppe-dwelling Indo-Aryan barbarians who invaded Old Europe beginning in the late fourth millennium BCE.

More Illogic from Paleontologists


Jewelry from the Grotte du Renne “reindeer cave” at Arcy-sur-Cure in Central France has long been assigned to Neanderthals, helping rehabilitate them in the picture paleontologists paint of early mankind. But these artifacts have now been questioned thanks to a redating of the lowest levels of the cave, where Neanderthals were presumed active. According to Science Magazine vol. 330, no. 6003, p. 439) in October 2010,

Jewish Marker I Signature of European Admixture


Jewish I is described as “the most common of the three markers… its frequency highest in Poles, Russians, Germans, Hungarians, Romanians and Slavic peoples who intermarried with Ashkenazi Jews. It also appears in Italian, Spanish, Portuguese and Moroccan Jews (Sephardim).”