12/01/2018
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MyHeritage DNA announces updates and improvements to its DNA matches

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MyHeritage DNA has today announced it has upgraded its DNA matches system to produce more accurate and specific DNA matches for both existing and new users.

The improvements promise that users will now receive:

  • More accurate DNA Matches
  • About 10 times as many DNA Matches
  • More specific and more accurate relationship estimates
  • Indications of DNA Match confidence levels to help focus research efforts

The changes apply both to anyone who has taken a MyHeritage DNA past, or who has uploaded their raw data to MyHeritage from another DNA test provider.

MyHeritage DNA currently has more than one million people in its DNA database and its DNA Matching compares DNA kits in the MyHeritage database to each other, to find relatives, i.e. individuals who share DNA segments with each other, and to help explain how these individuals are related.

The presence of shared DNA segments between two people can indicate a blood relationship, meaning that the shared segments were inherited from a common ancestor. If the shared segments are numerous and large, a blood relationship is more certain. On the other hand, if the shared segments are small in number and size, it can also be a matter of coincidence, indicating no blood relationship at all. Users are now shown whether a DNA match is a high. medium or lower confidence match, to help people to concentrate their efforts on only contacting DNA matches who are likely to share one or more ancestors in common.

Shared DNA

MyHeritage said: 'In other words, whenever you review a DNA Match on MyHeritage that is not marked as low confidence or medium confidence, you can now be almost certain that you are not wasting your time on a false positive.

'If the match you are reviewing is estimated to be a second cousin or closer, there is so much shared DNA that you can rest assured it is not a false positive.

'Ethnicity estimates are separate from DNA Matching and the improvements described here do not affect ethnicity estimates. We are planning an update to our ethnicity reports in the next few months to improve their accuracy too. Stay tuned!'

Find out more about MyHeritage DNA on their website.

Don't miss the Family Tree Guide to DNA, available to download now!

 Your Guide to DNA, in association with MyHeritage has everything you need to know about DNA and family history.

Discover fascinating facts about using DNA to enhance your family tree, with expert content from previous issues of Family Tree magazine; explore the major DNA tests and what they can tell you; and find out about the latest DNA projects.

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