Spencer Wells on How DNA Reveals our History

Spencer Wells used just mtDNA and yDNA to trace the movements of peoples through time.
If you take all the DNA in one cell of your body it would stretch out to be over 2 meters long. This DNA in one cell contains over 6 billion nucleotides and the pattern of genetic variation allows us to construct a family tree for everyone who is alive today.


Author: Johnathan Storlie

Dr. Storlie is a Spring Grove native, and the Heritage Center's genetic genealogist, webmaster, and videographer. In addition to his work at the Heritage Center, he teaches genetics, microbiology, immunology, and other health related college courses. Dr. Storlie earned a PhD with a specialty in human virology . He also earned his Masters with a specialty in Ontology, or the study of the phenomenon of Being and its stewardship.

2 thoughts on “Spencer Wells on How DNA Reveals our History”

  1. My mother was born in Spring Grove in 1909…100% Norwegian so this sight interests me. Most of her family are buried there….stumbled upon this when looking for DNA testing thur ancestry.com…….noticed your tests re more expensive. Are they better?

  2. We give out commercially available genetics tests as a thank you gift to new members who contribute over $175. We believe that these can be valuable sources of information for genealogical research. We do not have our own genetic tests. Dr. Storlie has his PhD in Genetics and about 6 years experience working with the various autosomal tests and 10 years working with yDNA and mtDNA tests. We can assist people who want to get more out of their genetic ancestry tests and in using services like Gedmatch to cross-compare various genetic ancestry company users. The larger the database and the number of markers tested, the more genealogical power a genetic test has. Therefore, everyone who has already taken the test benefits as the database size grows.

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