Legitimate upgrade of mtDNA haplogroup status?

+8 votes
My wife's brother was Y-DNA and mtDNA tested at FTDNA in 2009.  His mtDNA was determined to be plain vanilla H at that time and has not been upgraded by FTDNA to date.

My wife (full sister) tested in 2013 at 23andME for autosomal DNA, which, at that time, additionally provided her mtDNA haplogroup status.

My memory of this mt test result is that it was H.  Not sure as we were much more interested in the auDNA at the time.

Now, as I am working on their side of the tree, I see that the 23andME mtDNA status is given as being H-2a1.

Is there any reason why I should not list the H-2a1 haplogroup for both profiles?
in The Tree House by William Harvey G2G6 (7.5k points)
retagged by Ellen Smith

2 Answers

+1 vote
Your wife's mtDNA results should also show up on her brother's profile page. They surely have the same mtDNA, but I would be reluctant to change the H on her brothers test results because it may misrepresent the data included in that test.
by James Applegate G2G6 Mach 5 (54.0k points)
–1 vote
Hello William,

An alternative is to keep her haplogroup as H and select that her brother had an Other mtDNA test.  Then enter his mtDNA haplogroup as H2a1 (not H-2a1).  In the note field for his Other mtDNA test say he was tested by 23andMe and give the approximate date of his test.  Using Other mtDNA test will automatically associate his mtDNA haplogroup with their direct maternal line.

Sincerely, Peter
by Peter Roberts G2G6 Pilot (546k points)
edited by Peter Roberts
Well, I sort of did the opposite as a bit reluctant to fabricate a test at 23andMe.

Instead, I changed the brother's haplogroup to H2a1 (thanks for the correction) and gave his note field a comment that his test was initially H and had been upgraded following his sister's test results as H2a1.
Hello Harvey,

The important point is that the more accurate H2a1 subhaplogroup gets automatically associated with their direct maternal line. That will only happen if the tester's privacy level is at least "Private with Public Family Tree" and the DNA Tests page shows that the tester had an mtDNA test.  Haplogroups for a 23andMe test do not get automatically associated up the direct line.

On a personal note, my children are H2a1 and it is not very common.  An early research paper tagged the ancient origin as Eastern Slavic.  Some of the servants of Czar Nicholas II (whose mtDNA was found among his remains) were also H2a1.  Please let us know your wife's brother's WikiTree ID  and / or MitoSearch ID.

Thanks and sincerely, Peter

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