Archiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2001-07 > 0994339418

From: "Michael Marcil" <>
Subject: [DNA] Bryan Sykes' Book
Date: Thu, 5 Jul 2001 09:23:38 -0400
References: <> <>

Hi all,

Has anyone read Bryan Sykes' new book, "The Seven Daughters of Eve?" It's
great! I'm just about finished with it and I found it fascinating!


----- Original Message -----
From: "Allan S. Gleason" <>
To: <>
Sent: Thursday, July 05, 2001 3:09 AM
Subject: Re: [DNA] Surname DNA Projects/AGENUS

> The fireworks, as usual were great weren't they, I love tradition!
> If you fellows don't mind a couple of comments from a guy who knows very
> little of the DNA technology or what it can do, I was struck by the
> admission that this is a new technology and you want to standardize
> already.
> I once met (introduced, we shook hands) professor Shockley when he was
> at Stanford. A few years earlier he had co-invented the transistor. At
> that time I'm certain that he and most certainly I were not aware of the
> implications of that new technology - I don't believe anyone really
> was!
> It wasn't long after that I had in my lab a Commodore Pet computer with
> a massive 12KB memory to serve the operating system, a small Basic
> program, the language itself and any data created. It served as an
> experiment controller and would also give me instant answers to
> calculations without my having to resort to my slide rule or pencil and
> paper - how I loved that machine! It wasn't long before companies
> started to produce microprocessor based spectrum analyzers for my lab.
> But long before IBM thought there was any future in the microcomputer
> business, I had my Commodore 64 at home figuring out my taxes, real
> estate interests and entertainment - of course I had to learn how to
> program it myself. So now I'm writing to you - all of you - with this
> monster with Gigabytes of mysterious programming and 19" eyes! And it
> all happened in about a third of my life! (The first tenth we actually
> didn't have electricity or indoor plumbing)
> OK, my point. I don't think a new technology should start
> 'standardizing' too early. Sure things are a mess and no one is doing
> anything like anyone else and there is a scramble for business and maybe
> the customer could be better served but I would suggest that if you want
> to standardize now, go for 50 or 200 markers, whatever markers are,
> because it won't be long before everyone will feel constrained by the
> standardization envelope and there will be demand for one generation
> resolution - how many markers is that? Your industry is just too new
> for constraints, yet.
> You have an interesting mix of commercial laboratories who want to sell
> their services, i.e.: to answer genealogical questions in the least
> expensive way. But after all, the answer HAS to be worth the price to
> the consumer! And universities and maybe other DNAists who are funded
> by grants, etc. whose drive is to solve the human migration and
> evolution questions just as other funded scientists strive to determine
> what happened after the big bang or suck the grant system with ozone
> holes!
> It seems to me that the commercial labs are going to have to run 'lean
> and mean' but follow the lead of those born with a silver spoon in their
> mouths!
> Allan
> Kevin Duerinck wrote:
> >
> > Bob Durham <> wrote:
> >
> > 1) Do you recommend 20 markers based on existing
> > markers(Y-STR Loci), or on markers "in the works"?
> > [Kevin's reply: Bob, I believe that it will be either up to the testing
> > labs in conjunction with research labs to come to an agreement regarding
> > 20 marker standard, or maybe the international standards body called
> > (Human Gene Nomenclature Committee) based at University College, London
> > will have to. We need to have compare capabilities. Everyone does the
> > genealogy community a disservice not to have a standard test. Would
> > to see it at 20, and we are all cognizant of the fact that this science
> > still in its infancy and more time is needed to get where we want to go.
> > Either one of these options will happen or all of this will become
> > as testing moves into other areas, such as proteins.]
> ==============================
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