Where can you buy a DNA test

Best DNA Testing Kits 2021: From Ancestry to Genetics, Here are what you should buy

This page was translated using AI and machine learning.

(Pocket-lint) - We all would probably like to know where we are from and if we are prone to any diseases or conditions related to our family's health history.

Unfortunately, not everyone has access to this type of information, usually because their ancestors are not well documented.

Thanks to the advent of DNA test kits in recent years, people can for the first time use science - at home and relatively inexpensively - to learn more about their ethnic roots, genotype, traits, health risks, and more. The problem is, there are a lot of options to choose from.

It's hard to determine which one is best for you, but it all depends on your budget and what you want in a kit. Now if you search for "DNA testing kits" you will get millions of results, and many of them will leave you scratching your head.

To make things easier, we've listed the most popular.

MyHeritage

What is a DNA test kit?

DNA test kits do a variety of things. Some will let you know if you are predisposed to genetic diseases, while others will help you figure out where you are from and may even put you in touch with relatives. Either way, this guide covers tests that you can do at home, either wiping the inside of your cheek or spitting into a tube to submit your DNA for testing.

Some DNA testing providers, such as B. Ancestors maintain databases for members so they can build family trees and find and connect with other relatives. Typically, customers can opt out of their DNA data being shared with other members. However, while trying to identify the Golden State's killer in 2018, law enforcement agencies were able to easily access one of these types of databases.

This helped the police find and arrest the perpetrator. And while this is good news, it raised a slew of questions and concerns about how law enforcement agencies could use data from an ignorant DNA kit user to trap her husband. So if you allow your DNA testing information to be stored and shared for genealogical, research, or other purposes, it is being advised that your privacy is no longer guaranteed.

In addition, law enforcement and government agencies in the United States can attempt legal access to your genetic personal information at any time.

Which DNA test kits are the best?

23andMe

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23andMe | What it can do:

23andMe analyzes your DNA for information about your origins and relationships. It has collected DNA from more than three million people to date and has given each of those customers detailed online reports of their origins - delving into their maternal and paternal lines and even telling them how much Neanderthal DNA they have - and given access to even more. optional DNA-based health tests.

23andMe offers two kits: Health and Ancestry and Ancestry. The health and parentage plan includes testing for genetic health risks (such as Parkinson's disease) and carrier status for conditions (such as cystic fibrosis). There is also a Wellness and Traits report, the first of which will determine your genetic predisposition to being overweight, for example, while the second will measure your likelihood of hair loss, etc.

Lineage focuses on your lineage. You can see your extended DNA family and all famous relatives (you can choose to have others find you by name and show your name to potential matches). It also shows you a list of your relatives' countries of origin and top last names. You can also see how much Neanderthal DNA is in your DNA.

Your results will be broken down into a few categories: Ancestry Composition, Maternal Line, Paternal Line, and Neanderthal Ancestry, while a Lineage Summary page provides a graphical representation of your ancestry composition and an overall view of all of your sample results.

23andMe | How it works:

When ordering a 23andMe kit, you must agree to the company's terms of use. When you receive it, activate it using the barcode and set up an account with 23andMe. After that, you'll need to provide your name, date of birth, gender and confirm that you may learn information about yourself that you weren't expecting (e.g. whether your grandfather is really blood related).

23andMe's collection kit prompts you not to eat, drink, smoke, chew gum, brush your teeth, or use mouthwash for 30 minutes prior to providing your sample. You have to spit into a tube until your sample reaches the fill line. Then close the lid that releases the stabilization liquid into the sample, slide the tube into the plastic bag provided, place it in the stamped envelope and mail it.

Your results should arrive in six to eight weeks.

23andMe | Are your data private?

23andMe said it will "not sell, lease, or rent your information on an individual basis" to third parties or for research purposes without your "express consent". However, it uses "aggregated information and shares it with third parties" to "conduct business development, conduct research and send you marketing emails". On the data protection page you will find further information on handling data.

23andMe also said that your information "may be disclosed based on a court or other subpoena, arrest warrant or government order, or in coordination with regulators." In such a case, 23andMe will meet the requirements and notify you - unless the legal request prevents this. See his transparency report for all of the government's requests for data it has received.

AncestryDNA

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AncestryDNA | What it can do:

Ancestry launched one of the first consumer DNA testing kits. It analyzes DNA and integrates this data into your family tree if you are a subscriber to the service. Even if you don't, it will test your DNA to determine parentage. Ancestry has collected DNA from more than five million people. Although you won't get any health information, it does tell you how much Neanderthal DNA you have.

Your results will include an online dashboard that shows you a graph with an ethnicity estimate and DNA matches with others. You can view a map of where your ancestors lived, learn about your ethnicity and countries, and see how you compare to the local population. Depending on your genetic makeup, you may also see "trace regions" in your ethnicity estimate, etc.

AncestryDNA is a fun way to learn about (or verify) your ancestors. If you need help, you can call Ancestry Support seven days a week or access the forums and FAQ section. When you cancel your account, you can download your DNA report and keep it with you forever.

AncestryDNA | How it works:

Ancestry will provide you with a collection kit. Your kit should arrive within a week or so. When you receive the kit, you must first activate it online using a unique code on the kit. You'll need to enter your name and click Activate. Next, you can link your kit to your Ancestry tree (if Ancestry finds a match with other members, it will compare it to your tree).

Once you've activated your kit and set up your account, you'll need to spit into a plastic tube to the fill line. You cannot eat, drink, or smoke for 30 minutes before you give your sample. Next, drop the funnel and screw on the included cap to release a stabilizing liquid. Then shake the tube, put it in the collection bag provided, put it in a prepaid shipping box, and mail it.

You will receive a confirmation of receipt with an activation number and information on how the results should arrive in the next six to eight weeks. In many cases, however, results are ready in just two weeks. An adult doing a DNA test is considered the owner of that test. However, he can allow other family members or friends to manage the results and allow others to view them as well.

AncestryDNA | Are your data private?

Ancestry said that your information is stored in a secured database that is protected from "unauthorized access by anyone outside of AncestryDNA" and that your private information, such as your name and address, is not accessible to the laboratory. A full breakdown of the personal information Ancestry collects about you can be found here. The company's privacy website details how they try to protect all of your data.

Ancestry also said it "does not volunteer with law enforcement" and that any government agency that searches for data must follow a "valid legal process," meaning it complies with legal requirements. However, Ancestry does not allow law enforcement agencies to use its "crime solving" services. See his transparency report for all of the government's requests for data it has received.

MyHeritageDNA

HomeDNA

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HomeDNA | What it can do:

With HomeDNA you can find out about your ancestry, paternity or even the genetic makeup of your pets. You'll see information about gene pools, family migration patterns, and more. Here are the different tests available: GPS Origins Ancestry Test, DNA Origins Maternal Lineage, DNA Origins Paternal Lineage, HomeDNA Starter Ancestry Test, and Vitagene Health Report and Ancestry.

In this guide, we'll look at the GPS Origins Ancestry Test, which will help you identify the exact city or village where different groups of your ancestors met. The test analyzes 800,000 autosomal genetic markers, 862 reference populations and 36 gene pools. HomeDNA does not attempt to trace you back to Africa like other tests can, although it still gives a lot of details.

It doesn't look for genetic matches like many other services and doesn't have family tree software. However, it can run health and breed identification tests for dogs, specific tests for humans (like healthy weight and skin care), and personalized nutrition and fitness advice. It takes a deep look at your ancestors, including your ancestors who lived to Africa and where they migrated over time.

The company also has a number to call if you have any questions about how to summarize the data from your results.

HomeDNA | How it works:

The HomeDNA extraction kit contains four cotton swabs and two envelopes. You dab each cheek twice, put the swabs in an envelope, close it, and place that envelope in the prepaid envelope. No stabilizing liquid and no eating, drinking or chewing required. Your name is not on your test. There is a unique barcode that protects your privacy and makes it easy to track.

Before sending your sample, you must register your kit online to see your results. It takes up to 10 days for the prepaid envelope to reach the HomeDNA lab and it takes another two to three weeks to process the results. You will receive a notification when your results are ready. At this point, you log into the HomeDNA website and you can either view the results or download the raw data to keep forever.

HomeDNA | Are your data private?

HomeDNA said that except for statutory paternity tests, all samples will be destroyed. It also does not maintain a publicly available database and "does not share rabbit or customer data with any company or organization that is not affiliated with HomeDNA's parent company, DDC". A closer look at the company's privacy policy confirmed that your data will be shared with business partners and affiliated companies.

HomeDNA also said it will disclose your information to law enforcement agencies if it believes such disclosure is necessary to "comply with applicable law or respond to served subpoenas or warrants." It will also do this to "protect or defend" its rights and for "risk management purposes".

MyHeritage DNA

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MyHeritage DNA | What it can do:

MyHeritage DNA offers DNA testing with free family tree matching. You can see where your ancestors lived and your results can be expanded as you build a family tree. You can access tools like Smart Matching, which are used to find matching profiles in other members' family trees and record matches. MyHeritage claims to sort billions of historical records. It also offers its own free family tree software.

You can use it to invite other relatives to work on the family tree. When you click the notification email to access your results, you will see a spinning globe with local music and a map showing your results. Highlighted areas indicate your ethnicity (percentages are shown on the left). You can zoom in and out on the online map to see your ethnic roots. However, it does not show deep data.

There will also be no extensive Neanderthal DNA information. So if you want to see where ancestors lived and what may have caused them to migrate to another part of the world at some point, you should turn to other services like AncestryDNA and others.

MyHeritage DNA | How it works:

To order a kit, simply provide your year of birth and gender. You will receive your kit within a week. From that point on, you can register it by adding the barcode to your account. Kits are tracked by number. Once you have it registered you are ready to make the swab part. This DNA kit contains two swabs and two vials filled with stabilizing solution. When you've wiped off a sample, break off the plastic piece and place the cotton swab in the solution.

Once you put them in the vials, slide the vials into the envelope provided. Unfortunately you have to enter postage. Your results should be available within a few weeks. MyHeritage has a Help Center with more information if you need help understanding your DNA results.

MyHeritage DNA | Are your data private?

MyHeritage DNA stated that it uses your personal information to provide its services, e.g. B. the calculation of a relationship path between you and relatives. for internal purposes such as developing new tools; and for research - with your consent. They claim never to sell your data to advertisers, partners or third parties. Read the full MyHeritage DNA Privacy Policy here.

MyHeritage DNA also said it will provide "genetic personal information" to law enforcement agencies when required by a valid court order or subpoena.

Which is the absolute best?

23andMe Health and Ancestry is not only concerned with your health, but also with your origins. However, if you are an Ancestry.com user, AncestryDNA will look deep into your past and link you to other members' trees. Both are top notch services that far outweigh their competitors.

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Writing by Maggie Tillman. Editing by Max Freeman-Mills.