Archiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2010-02 > 1265278892

From: "Ian Logan" <>
Subject: Re: [DNA] FTDNA admits to errors in many mtDNA sequences
Date: Thu, 4 Feb 2010 10:21:35 -0000
References: <574B3DDE46B74CB688150F9E310E33DF@IanPC><>
In-Reply-To: <>


For anyone who wishes to follow this saga .....

'We' now have 2 emails from FTDNA - which do appear to contradict each other.

Does anything more need to be said just at the moment ?

But just to make one point .... I understand FTDNA make a FASTA file from
the list of mutations; so if this list is wrong then the FASTA file will also be wrong.


From: "Eileen Krause Murphy" <>
Sent: Wednesday, February 03, 2010 8:34 AM
To: .....
Subject: RE: On how to proceed ...

Hello all,

I am writing to clarify as there seems to be some confusion about this
problem. There was not an error in the lab, nor was there an error in the
sequencing. There was a software problem which labeled these insertions for
many customers as 524.1C 524.2A instead of 524.1A 524.2C or 523.1C 523.2A,
either of which would have been correct. All of these were normalized in
October to 523.1C 523.2A during our updates that converted everyone to the
same nomenclature.

E-mail any time,
Eileen Krause Murphy
Family Tree DNA

From: "Thomas Krahn" <>
Sent: Thursday, February 04, 2010 9:40 AM
To: .....
Subject: Re: [DNA] FTDNA admits to errors in many mtDNA sequences

Dear Jan,

It is important that you need to distinguish "erroneous" from reporting
in non- standard format.
The sequences didn't have errors (since FTDNA also supplied the correct
FASTA sequence files), but they were just reported in a way that doesn't
comply the current nomenclature. By the time these sequences were
reported the current standard wasn't even fully established.

This is of course no excuse for keeping the wrong nomenclature in
searchable databases. That's why FTDNA has invested a lot of time to
re-investigate old sequences to bring them up to date to the current

It is also important that you realize that the current mtDNA
nomenclature is definitely still not the ultimate solution. There are
still some "opinion" related loci that are inconsistently reported so
that you need to force software algorithms to make exceptions so that
they are called like the nomenclature standard requires it. The
nomenclature standard is from a evolutionary standpoint (relating to the
actual biochemical mutation pathway) sometimes complete nonsense. Future
developments will not use any nomenclature system for comparison but
they will simply compare full sequences (e.g. in FASTA format) with each
other. This will soon make nomenclature discussions obsolete.

Like in every kindergarten the tiny small mtDNA molecule is highly
discussed with strong emotional attitude. Maybe when the mtDNA
researchers grow up and start understanding the global scope of total
genomic context they will learn that the nomenclature is not the only
interesting issue that can be learned from the mitochondrial genome ;)

I hope this helps,


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