DNA Genealogy Timeline - Short Version

GKBopp DNA Project Notes

5 July 2005
Additions, corrections welcome. Send to
The Short Informal Version

See THE LONG VERSION for details, citations, and links

Pre 1980

See The Long Version and the other timeline links at the end of that page


First report of mtDNA sequencing


PCR procedure conceived (Mullis)


Forensic scientists use blood analysis to identify families of kidnapped children in Argentina
DNA fingerprinting introduced (Alec Jeffreys, England)


All humans alive today descend from a single woman 200,000 years ago (mtDNA, Cann, et al)

Late '80's

First crime conviction based on DNA fingerprinting

Oct 1992

Article published on use of mtDNA and genealogy (Roderick, et al)


mtDNA identifies Romanov family - Nicholas II, last Czar of Russia (Gill, et al)


FBI begins using nuclear and mitochondrial DNA in criminal cases

Jan 1997

Cohanim/Cohen/Kohanim study - Y chromosomes of Jewish priests (Hammer, et al)

May 1997

Alan Savin is the first genealogy hobbyist to conduct a DNA surname study


Britain's 9,000 year old Cheddar Man has a relative living in Cheddar (mtDNA, Sykes)

Nov 1998

Thomas Jefferson - Sally Hemmings study (Y-chromosome - Foster, et al)


Surname studies by Pearl Duncan (Akuapim Project), Sykes, Greenspan.


Commercial stage begins. FTDNA and OA go into business.


James L. Sorenson meets with BYU; see also on the Long Version, 2001 Relative Genetics, 2003 Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation (SMGF).


Savin's DNA for Family Historians

Feb 2000

Lemba study "Black Jews of Southern Africa" (Y-chromosome)

Mar 2000

BYU project begins (moved to Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation in 2003)

Spring 2000

Surname projects begin with commercial companies - Mumma was the first
(FTDNA's early surname projects - and other pioneers - are listed in the Long Version)

Jun 2000

Sequencing of the entire human genome announced.

Oct 2000

Turner starts the GENEALOGY-DNA-L discussion list at RootsWeb after conducting the first known private mtDNA study


Quiet year.

Sept 2002

DNAPrint Genomics offers "BioGeographical Ancestry" (BGA) testing and the above discussion list has been arguing about it ever since . . . .

Feb 2003

Genghis Khan study - he has a lot of descendants (Y chromosome)

Aug 2003

The "complete" sequencing of the Y chromosome (about 23 million bases out of 50+ million)

2003 Misc.

African Ancestry and Trace Genetics offer specialized services, DNA Heritage offers Y testing, DNAPrint test helps identify murder suspect


 1st conference for surname administrators (FTDNA); three books published

July 2005

 Journal of Genetic Genealogy (JoGG) launched.

See THE LONG VERSION for details, citations, and links

GKBopp DNA Project Notes