DNA Testing Reveals Our True Relatives

This story about personal DNA testing is quite interesting. I know a few people who are doing this. Take a look at this excerpt:

“Take Cezary Fudali, a 41-year-old business and securities lawyer living in Ottawa, Ontario. He has always been drawn to books about Israel and Middle Eastern architecture. But it wasn’t until he turned to his own family history that he began to see a connection between his intellectual curiosity and his own life.

Through an Internet ancestry site, he met a cousin from New Jersey who asked him if he knew his mother was adopted. Fudali was shocked. She told him that in the summer of 1943, during World War II, his maternal grandparents passed through a train station in Rozwadow, Poland, where they met a poor woman who begged them to take her child. Miraculously, his grandparents took the baby home and raised her as their own. His mother, who still lives in Poland, never knew she was adopted until her son heard this story, and his great aunt confirmed it. His mother still doesn’t believe the story is true.

Fudali, however, got some convincing evidence in 2003, when his ancestry research led him to a company called Family Tree DNA, one of a number of new companies selling cheek-swab tests that reveal genetic origins through mitochondrial DNA, a type of DNA inherited from one’s mother. Fudali, who was born into a rather typical Polish family in Warsaw in 1967—his father was Catholic by birth, but called himself an atheist—took the DNA test and was shocked to find he fell into a group called H-6A1, which is DNA that has only been found among Eastern European, Moroccan, Algerian, and Turkish Jews. Fudali concluded that his mother was of Judaic origins, and this information led him to believe that the woman who had given up her baby was most probably a Jew trying to save her daughter from the Nazis.

In 2006, a group of scientists discovered that 40 percent of the world’s Ashkenazi Jews could now be traced back to four women—two years later, a team of geneticists at universities in England and Spain discovered through Y chromosome testing that 20 percent of the population of the Iberian Penisula has Sephardic Jewish ancestry. A large majority of these hidden genetic Jews had converted to Catholicism during the Spanish Inquisition, and many had migrated to Italy.”

Hat Tip to: Rabbi Fink

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