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Living DNA launches new German DNA project

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A large-scale appeal for volunteers to contribute to a long-term German DNA project has been launched by Living DNA. Find out more about understanding family finder DNA tests in the June issue of Family Tree magazine, available to pre-order today.

One Family - The German People / Eine Familie - Die Deutschen, is a collaborative project by European ancestry firm Living DNA and Germany’s largest genealogy society, Verein für Computergenealogie e.V. (CompGen).

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The project aims to map the genetic structure of contemporary Germany and surrounding eastern regions (Silesia, Posen, Pomerania, East and West Prussia), which have been part of Germany prior to World War I, with a particular focus on the former eastern provinces (now part of Poland and Russia).

Volunteer criteria

Individuals with four grandparents all born within 80 kilometres (50 miles) of each other, are being sought to take part in the project by taking a simple DNA test. By focusing on people whose grandparents were all born in close proximity, the team aims to build up the most detailed and accurate regional map of Germany’s genetic history – prior to the loss of territory and mass departures from the eastern parts of Germany that occurred as a result of World War II.

To encourage suitable people to come forward, individuals who fit the criteria will be able to claim a discounted DNA test at €89 + return postage (RRP €159), which includes lifetime membership to Living DNA.

Qualifying people who have already had their DNA tested, can transfer their results to the project free of charge and receive a complimentary lifetime membership to Living DNA, which means that they will receive updates to their ancestry results as the Living DNA database grows.

The importance of the project

Dr. Tobias Kemper, genetic genealogist working for CompGen, said: “We are thrilled to be working on this project which will show how the history of middle Europe – from the Roman Empire through the middle ages and the early modern period – until now has left traces within German DNA and their regional distribution.

“This project is of the utmost importance for genealogy in Germany, because it will lead to the creation of the first databank containing a large amount of German DNA samples. DNA genealogy, which has already established itself in many other countries, through the special link between historical research and natural science, will finally also be available in Germany on a large scale.”

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