Category Archives: Ancestry

Stuck at Home, Scientists Discover 9 New Insect Species

WHEN THE NATURAL History Museum of Los Angeles County shut down due to the pandemic in mid-March, Lisa Gonzalez headed home with the expectation that she would be back in a few weeks. But once it became clear that she wouldn’t get back anytime soon, Gonzalez, the museum’s assistant entomology collection manager, converted her home’s craft room into a makeshift lab. Then she began sifting through thousands of insects the museum had previously collected via a citizen science project.

Boulder County Sheriff’s Office solves 1970 rape and murder case

The Boulder County Sheriff’s Office said DNA evidence has identified a man who died in 2019 as the person who likely raped and murdered a 23-year-old Denver woman in 1970.
According to a release, Betty Lee Jones was found dead on March 9, 1970, by two Colorado Department of Transportation workers down an embankment on Colo. 128 near the Boulder and Jefferson county border.

Officials announce world’s oldest cold case solved using genetic genealogy in Colorado

It has been almost 57 years since Margaret “Peggy” Beck, 16, was raped and killed at a Girl Scout camp in Jefferson County. DNA evidence led to an arrest warrant being issued.

Mysterious human ancestor finds its place in our family tree

When it comes to deciphering our ancient family tree, DNA from fossils is the new gold standard. But after about half a million years, even the best-preserved DNA degrades into illegibility, leaving the story of our early evolution shrouded in mystery. A new study of proteins taken from the tooth of an enigmatic human ancestor reveals their rough place in the family tree—and shows how ancient proteins can push beyond the limits of DNA.

MU Health Opens Drive-Through COVID-19 Testing

MU Health Care started drive-through testing for COVID-19 in the parking lot of the Mizzou softball stadium. The system announced the station will be open for testing from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. daily, including on the weekend.
Anyone wanting to get a test will first need an order from a healthcare provider. MU Health is offering free virtual screenings for people who think they may have the disease on its website.

Genetic DNA tool used to catch Sycamore double murder suspect marks 100th case for lab

The DNA genealogy mapping used to connect an Ohio man with the brutal homicide of Patricia Wilson and Robert Wilson in Sycamore 3½ years later is the same complex forensic tool used to identify a suspect in the Golden State Killer case in California.
CeCe Moore, chief genetic genealogist at Reston, Virginia-based company called Parabon NanoLabs – which undertook an arduous process of building a family tree for the offender using publicly available DNA databases – said Monday’s arrest marked the 100th case the laboratory has helped solve using the DNA technology. The labs also used genetic phenotyping using DNA taken from the scene to compile a rough digital sketch of what the Wilson murder suspect might look like.

Cutbacks by Ancestry, 23andMe Signal a Shakeout for DNA Industry

(Bloomberg) — Consumer DNA-testing firms are closing up shop and cutting jobs, as a lull in sales forces the industry to move beyond the genealogy tests that turned a handful of well-funded companies into household names.
At least three companies have closed down or suspended their operations over the past year, while the two DNA-testing bellwethers, Ancestry.com LLC and 23andMe Inc., each cut approximately 100 jobs in recent weeks. Others have pulled tests from the market thanks to slow sales.

Forensic genealogy group helps Cumberland County investigators crack 21-year-old cold case

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) — A popular genealogy website helped crack a cold case murder of a baby from 21 years ago.

Promega Custom Manufacturing Capabilities Aid in Rapid Development of Co-Diagnostics’ New Coronavirus Test

Promega Corporation is being recognized by Utah-based Co-Diagnostics, Inc. for the support Promega custom manufacturing provided in the rapid development and launch of the new Logix Smart™ COVID-19 Test. Co-Diagnostics yesterday afternoon announced its coronavirus test received CE mark approval and is now available in Europe as an in vitro diagnostic (IVD). The news comes roughly one month after Co-Diagnostics first began work on a test to detect SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

When Did Ancient Humans Begin to Understand Death?

The dead lay in a cave, over a quarter-mile from daylight. Investigators counted remains from at least 28 individuals. The bones were fractured into nearly 7,000 pieces, mixed with bear fossils and mud — and a 6-inch, teardrop-shaped handaxe.
DNA analysis identified the individuals, dated to approximately 430,000 years ago, as early Neanderthals — our evolutionary cousins — or their ancestors.

How do we test for coronavirus, anyway?

A rundown of the biology behind testing for a virus we hadn’t seen before.
The first challenge of sequencing a coronavirus genome is that it’s made of RNA rather than DNA. Most of our tools for working with nucleic acids are specific to DNA. Fortunately, we’ve discovered an enzyme called “reverse transcriptase” that takes RNA and makes a DNA copy of it—

DNA Twice Clears Man Falsely Accused After 1991 Homicide

Fresh DNA evidence testing gave closure to a 1991 New Jersey cold case murder. It has cleared a man twice who was falsely accused of killing a 58-year-old woman, prosecutors said Friday.

Identical twins, identical DNA, different ancestry results? We put three kits to the test

MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – Caroline and Camille Clarke are 7-year-old first-graders at Hutchens Elementary School in Mobile. Their favorite subject is science.
It shouldn’t be a surprise – they’re identical twins.
So the results of DNA tests should be exactly the same for both girls, right? To find out, FOX10 News had each girl take three of the most popular DNA ancestry kits on the market – Ancestry.com, 23andMe, and National Geographic.

Ancient DNA from West Africa Adds to Picture of Humans’ Rise

The Shum Laka rock shelter in Cameroon, where the remains of two 8,000-year-old boys were discovered in 1994. Scientists recently recovered ancient DNA from the two individuals and from another pair of children buried 5,000 years later.

Georgia Uses DNA Sample and Genealogy to Solve 1999 Rapes

MARIETTA, Ga. — Advanced genetic genealogy testing helped authorities solve three Georgia rape cases from 1999, a prosecutor said Tuesday.
The three rapes happened between June and October 1999 within a three-mile radius of each other, Cobb County District Attorney Joyette Holmes said in a press release. In each case, a woman awoke in the wee hours of the morning in her own bed to find an unknown man standing over her.