N. Brent Kennedy III, Standard Bearer of Appalachian Diversity

N. Brent Kennedy III, Appalachian author, educator and development executive, died Monday, Sept. 21. A native of Wise, Va. and resident of Kingsport, Tenn., Kennedy endured many health challenges after a devastating stroke on December 17, 2005 that cut him down at the height of his career and popularity as healthcare executive and influential spokesmen for the region’s history and culture. He was 69.


DNA Consultants Adopts New Human Migration Map to Reflect Neanderthal and Denisovan Interbreeding

“Although the exact timing and geographical details of the separation of the first Eurasians from Africans remain intensely debated, it is clear that a crossing over the Horn of Africa to Arabia and subsequent coastal route around India and Indonesia to Australia cannot explain the admixture with other hominids preserved in the oldest travelers along that road,” said Yates. “The northern route proposed five years ago by Rosa Fregel and Vicente Cabrera of the University of Laguna in Spain has overwhelming advantages and should be adopted as the new model.” (more)

In the News August 2020

Angela E. Watkins received a promotion July 1 to associate investigator and director of social media at DNA Consultants. The longtime Pensacola, Fla. resident moved back to her native state of Colorado last year with her daughter Isabella Ray, 3…. (more)

Coronavirus Brings Changes in Way We Live

As the COVID-19 virus continues to rage in many cities across America, we are fortunate in our particular situation. Aside from being a home business we have good local government. Gov. Jared Polis, a Democrat who is exceptionally keen on science and public service, has stayed on top of the crisis since the beginning. He put Colorado on lockdown in response to the coronavirus pandemic as early as March 25. (more)

From the Editor: Inaugural Issue of Explorers Club Newsletter

Welcome to the inaugural issue of Explorers Club! In it, you will find the latest about our genetic genealogy services as well as the interests of our customers, researchers and scientists. From the secret origins of the Cherokees and Creeks to case studies on the Melungeons and the true story of the Lost Colony at Roanoke, we literally marry history and science to create an experience and a brand of content found nowhere else on the Web. (more)

DNA Consultants Responds to Shelter-at-Home Culture

Over the years, DNA Consultants has come to stand for hard-to-get personalized service and a valued second opinion alongside the big-box genomic companies. Its database reflects all world populations, metapopulations and megapopulations and has potential matches to reference populations others lack, like Enrolled Cherokee and Israeli Jews. (more)

Basic American Indian DNA Test Explodes Old, Tired Theories

“We do not say genomic results suggesting Native American percentages are wrong,” said Donald N. Yates, principal investigator. “But they are problematic and very politicized.” He argues they should be combined with other methods, including detailed genealogy records research and new scientific findings that take a fresh look at ethnicities and population change over time.

“Clients come to us all the time and say, ‘23&me or Ancestry or one of the other companies didn’t find my Native American,’” said Yates. “I have to tell them the company didn’t find their Native American because they don’t have the data: you can’t check a book out of the library if the library doesn’t have that book.” (more)

American Indian DNA Test Is Newest, Most Inclusive and Most Sensitive

DNA Consultants maintains all forensic population samples that have ever been published on American Indians, and undertook three of its own, whereas companies like 23&me and Family Tree DNA have very limited data, none, as it turns out from Cherokee studies. Eastern and southeastern Indians are typically underestimated, if not completely absent, in genetic surveys. Most descendants of Cherokee and other Eastern American Indian heritage draw blanks in ancestry testing. Often only Short Tandem Repeat testing, the backbone of DNA Consultants’ approach, reveals fine-grain American Indian connections.   (more)

Real People Who Proved Geneticists Wrong Will Now Have Audiobook

Panther's Lodge is producing an audiobook version of its title Cherokee DNA Studies: Real People Who Proved the Geneticists Wrong, by Donald N. Yates and Teresa A. Yates, principal officers of DNA Consultants. The title, which was the first in the series DNA Consultants Series on Consumer Genetics, appeared in print and on Kindle in December 2014. The audiobook version is an abridgment narrated by veteran broadcasting teacher Pete Ferrand and should be available on Audible by the holiday season.
Cherokee DNA Studies told the stories of more than a hundred participants in the company's first two phases of a research study finding unusual East Mediterranean mitochondrial types among the "standard" American Indian founding lineages in Cherokee descendants. Its DNA findings pointing to Egypt, the Levant and North Africa were heralded as "revolutionary" by Stephen C. Jett in a chapter of his book Atlantic Ocean Crossings: Reconsidering the Case for Contacts with the Pre-Columbian Americas (University of Alabama Press, 2017).
Phase III of the same study was closed in June and those results will be published in a follow-up volume title More Real People Who Proved the Geneticists Wrong.
Donald Yates, who also publishes as Donald N. Panther-Yates, has written or co-written some twenty-three books and has sixteen works on Audible. His latest two audiobooks were The Cherokee Origin Narrative, narrated by Jake Phillips, and On the Trail of Europa: Travels through Italy, Croatia, Greece and Turkey, read by Jim D. Johnston, both released this fall.