Ancestry Introduces SideView for Greater DNA Insights



Ancestry, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, unveiled SideView technology, a first-of-its-kind scientific innovation that separates DNA into parental sides giving AncestryDNA customers new insights into which side of the family they inherited their genetics from. 

With more than 20 million people in its growing consumer DNA network, Ancestry is the first company to be able to provide this type of genomic information without requiring a parent to be tested.

Phasing or understanding genetic inheritance without having genetic samples of an individual’s parents is a problem that scientists have been trying to solve for decades. Now with SideView technology, Ancestry can phase a customer’s entire genome into parental sides using the DNA they share with relatives in the AncestryDNA database – their DNA matches – to provide an even greater level for genomic discoveries. 

Grouping of matches is the first critical step in phasing DNA using SideView technology. SideView technology groups matches with a precision rate of 95% for 90% of AncestryDNA customers thanks to the size and statistical power of the AncestryDNA match network.

This process enables ethnicity inheritance – the newest AncestryDNA feature being powered by SideView, which informs a customer which side of the family they received each of their estimated ethnicities from.

“Understanding ethnicity and community inheritance in more detail has been the number one request from Ancestry customers for years. In fact, in a recent survey, we learned that one in three people don’t feel knowledgable about their family history and origins and want to learn more,” said Brian Donnelly, Senior Vice President and General Manager of AncestryDNA at Ancestry. “With our new SideView technology, we can now tell customers with great confidence from which side of the family they received their ethnicities and in the future, we’ll also to tell them which communities and DNA matches are from each side of the family.” 

Ethnicity inheritance, powered by SideView technology, is available to all AncestryDNA customers. You can purchase an AncestryDNA kit by visiting Ancestry.com. 

The Verge spoke with Barry Starr, the Director of Scientific Communications at Ancestry. He said, “It’s a really big breakthrough for science in general. That’s really something that no one else has been able to do without having a parent tested as well.” The feature will be automatically available for all users.

According to The Verge, Barry Starr said that Ancestry was interested in developing a way to sort genetic information by parent for a while, but it had to wait until the DNA database was big enough that the tool could be accurate. “The bigger the database, the better you can do,” he said. 

The database, however, is largely made up of people with European ancestry – the feature is less accurate for uses who have other ancestry from other parts of the world, according to a scientific article from Ancestry describing the technique. The paper has not yet been peer-reviewed or published in a scientific journal. 

Related Articles at FamilyTree.com:

California Expands Consumer Protections For Genetic Testing

DNA Testing Fills In Gaps For Adult Adoptees

23andMe Works Towards Improving Diversity in Genetic Research

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