Living DNA Genetic Test

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Living DNA Ancestry Genetic Test

Living DNA is one of the popular DNA testing companies. They are known to specialize in British ancestry of which they cover the most number of sub-populations. They are also one of the few companies that have shipment facilities to the most number of countries in the world.

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  • Service available in almost all countries.
  • Use customize Global Screening Array chip that is conducive to health analysis.
  • Best company to go to if you are British.
  • Skewed towards the Western population.
  • Genealogy community is not developed.
  • Family matches not yet available.
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Living DNA Genetic Test Review: Summary

I have discovered, that the living DNA test is an absolute wonder to behold. I had held specific ideas about my ancestry, but this confirmed my suspicions. It also made me realise a few mysterious things I had been eager to pursue. The lessons were very easy to grasp.

The living DNA test, in my opinion, is the best in the market and gives you value for your money; (The test doesn’t cover family finding).


Living DNA Genetic Test: Full review

A new company was established in 2016 by the DNA Worldwide known as Living DNA which deals with testing for one’s ancestry through their genes. Several tests have been sold including those developed by themselves, those developed with Scotland’s DNA and developed with family tree DNA. Only a small number of organizations work at improving their tests, so I was curious as to what living DNA had to offer.

Product Expectations

The site offers a single test. According to Living DNA, their test is the first to fit nearly every race indeed. As such you can find your ancestry in one of over 80 regions worldwide. For those who need specific details about their British ancestry, Living DNA covers 21 regions of the British isle.  They have listed on the site all 80worldwide regions and all the 21 British Isles.

The test reports about your ‘Fatherline’ ancestry (through your Y chromosome), your  ‘Motherline ‘ ancestry ( by testing your mitochondrial DNA)  and your family ancestry’ (through your autosomal DNA)  I was shown examples charts and interactive maps.

The charts and maps as they said, would contain the ethnic groups that I share DNA with and their location. Migratory paths maps will also be provided to show the paths my ancestors followed after leaving the  African continent thousands of years ago, and ill get to see how my lineage connects to other humans.

The Living DNA website provided for privacy for all the tests and results but with minor terms and conditions attached.

Ordering Experience

You have the option, a hard copy for an extra 39 pounds you were entitled to a hard copy of the results.  I only wanted the online copy though.

When I went through the terms and conditions, I discovered that they said your personal information wouldn’t be transferred outside the European Economic Area without you validating in writing. The terms and condition also contained a privacy policy which stated that one would have to inform the company to get their information and sample destroyed. It also said that should any sale of the entire company be made there would be a transfer of the information and samples to the new company. When I had completed and sent my order, I received an email confirming it and a testing kit some days later which was easy to use. On

On the sight, it was stated that my results would be sent in 10- 12 weeks after my sample got back to them. In exactly 12 weeks I got an email of my results on my account.

The Results

It was divided into: Ancestry, Family ancestry, maternal lineage, paternal lineage, Research, Share results, Test details

Results section: Family Ancestry

I found it interesting, that they called the analysis of my autosomal DNA my ‘Family Ancestry’ because no other reports that I’ve bought have used this before. I found out that in the Family Ancestry, I would be able to see up to ten generations of my ancestors and their geographic origin.

I was able to see the part of the British Isles that my ancestors had been a part of my autosomal DNA. I also got to see the discreet regions by clicking the “+” I saw the sub-regional view.

I got to see that over three generations ago, my recent ancestors had lived in London, Scotland, Leeds and Ireland. Through my autosomal results, I found out that my ancestry is predominantly Scottish.

Through tests taken in other places, I got to find out that around 7% of my autosomal DNA was attributed to Scandinavian countries. This wasn’t shown in Living DNA.

The sub-regional groups were divided into human-shaped chart images or a doughnut chart.

I also had access to a thorough history Map that showed me the spread of my through different times in history.  I even got to see too 80,000 years ago when the whole earth had the same ancestors.

The green dots in the through history level are the population groups I believe.

Results Section: Motherline

This section was to cover as far back as 200,00years of my maternal lineage. In the first subsection called ‘history’, I saw that I was likely related to those who colonised Europe on my maternal side. My maternal haplogroup seemed to end up in Kenya.

The ‘Coverage Map’ section showed me that the most significant population groups with which I share my ancestry are from El Molo in Kenya and Rendili in Kenya.

The ‘Migration Map’ which was the next subsection, showed the paths my maternal ancestors took when they left Africa.

The ‘phylogenetic tree’ showed how my maternal haplogroup and subclade were connected to all haplogroups dating back to early humans.

Results Section: Fatherline

Living DNA stated that it could date back to over 180,000 years of my paternal lineage. It showed me that my paternal haplogroup was Scandinavian and of the Baltic and north sea.

Only 4% in England shared my history as opposed to 25% of Norwegians, 20% Swedes, 20% Danes and 17% Finns.  The map showed my paternal ancestry left Africa, passed through Saudi Arabia and settled in Turkey, Europe and Scandinavia.

So far compared to other genetic companies, Living DNA remains the best.

Result Section: Research 

I had the option of choosing to share my result with Living DNA Global Research.  They also included how the research would be useful for the improvement f genetic ancestry and that I could choose to stop the use at any time.

In all, the Living DNA test ensures that you get value for your money.


User Reviews

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  1. Rating

    This test is particularly good if you are of predominately (90-100 pct.) British Isles ancestry as they specialize in offering a sub regional breakdown of all the regions in England, Scotland and Wales. However, If you are a mix of various North West European ancestries ( British, French, German, etc). your results at this time are bound to show an over estimated amount of British Isles ancestry and perhaps little to none of the other countries in NW Europe as they need to further refine their population samples in North Western Europe in particular. They do claim to also give a breakdown of 80 or so regions throughout the world although it is not clear how many samples from these areas they have in their data base at this time and you would most likely get a better, more accurate world breakdown from a few of the other well named vendors.. Still they are new and are bound to improve with time and will update your results for free as they further refine their sample populations..

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  2. Rating

    I agree with the previous review, the Living DNA autosomal test is best for people with roots from the United Kingdom. Since I do have UK ancestry, like most people taking DNA tests so far, I gave Living DNA a try. The test uses a recent 2015 People of the British Isles study of over 2000 Brits whose families have lived in the same rural areas for hundreds of years. I was impressed with my results. My Scot and Welsh percentages are very close to my family tree and other records. But my Irish was missing about 10% (mostly Southern Ireland which wasn’t sampled in the PoBI project) and I expected about 6% German/Dutch yet got 0% (again not sampled in PoBI). These missing populations were lumped in with my English, over reporting it. LDNA admits they have trouble distinguishing these populations now however they are expanding their reference populations in Germany and Ireland and we may see upgrades in those areas and possibly Sweden late this year or more likely next year. Honestly people in NW Europe and the UK are very similar so LDNA is doing a fine job already and will get better. I just tested my mother and paternal aunt and am looking forward to their results pre-update then after the Irish and German updates.

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  3. Rating

    As to the autosomal portion of the test, completely agree with the other reviewers about its British Isles emphasis. My results were fully comparable with the ethnicities predicted by other DNA testing companies. What is amazing though is that they provide the autosomal test *plus* a very good mitochondrial DNA test *plus* a very good yDNA test. The haplogroups they provided are very good – an equivalent mtDNA result to the much more expensive mtFULL test by their competition, and a very deep yDNA result, better than the much more expensive Y67 test plus backbone test, and partly into a SNP pack.

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  4. Rating

    I never got my results

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  5. Rating

    I would love to give a product review on the results. Unfortunately, there was an activation issue and absolutely no response from the company when contacted.

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  6. Rating

    I ordered the kit in the USA. The extended delivery period gave me time to research the product.At best its a game – a very expensive talking point. It’s unlikely any of these ‘games’ on offer have their own laboratory. Living DNA use one in Denmark called Eurofins, a commercial chemical testing laboratory, that safety test all kinds of products, from toys to food and furniture; and Living DNA ancestry samples!I queried the accuracy. This is their reply :…..”Depending on the company you test with your results will vary as each company has access to a different set of reference datasets to compare your sample against”.It indicates that the results are not a scientifically accurate test, are always suspect and non conclusive, in effect being nothing more than a wide guess. In fact at $159 an expensive game and should perhaps correctly be advertised as such. The public should be made aware of this in their advertising which presently is misleading.I’m unable to find evidence proving the tests to be anything more than a mere game. Advertising it as something it is not is highly suspect.It’s clear that this test sent to the American laboratory for an American born individual will provide results that are very unreliable and inaccurate, being that the majority of its population are of European extraction. As a scientist with medical background I will publish my research in relative forums.Many companies offer tests at widely varying prices. Each use different databases. NONE are accurate! Bottom line is Living DNA is useless for non British people, and even then at best should be treated as a mere game. .

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  7. Rating

    My wife wanted to check her ancestry, so I did my research. They seemed more reputable than 23 and Me and, especially about not selling your data and not giving you health/disease advice. It was easy to use and provided detailed, accurate results. I would recommend it over the other sites.

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  8. Rating

    They have admitted to me that their results are not accurate, because their sample is mostly from the UK. My mother’s family is from the UK and father’s from eastern Europe w/no UK connection known on his side for 100s of years…yet they claim I’m 75% from the UK. Not possible. They didn’t pick up my mother’s Dutch and French heritage, my father’s German heritage, nor his Hungarian or Slovak heritage. Given that my name is Hungarian and my father’s family spoke Slovak, that’s a huge oversight. I’ve asked for a refund, and I’m awaiting a response.

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