Your journey begins with a DNA test kit. Scientists then use your DNA to unlock the code that's used to determine your identity. Unlike other companies on the market, we NEVER profit by selling your DNA. We destroy it once we deliver your results.
You already know you have roots in Africa. But you don’t know exactly where or on which branches of your family tree. While we cannot guarantee that your result will be African, if they are, we find the specific African country & ethnic group.
Knowing where you are from is critical to knowing who you are. Once you have that you can then leverage an entire community of others just like you. Instead of trying to solve the puzzle all alone, you'll have a new family to help you on your journey.
Choose the path you'd like to start your journey. Select a test kit for your maternal, paternal, or both sides of your family. Within 7-10 business days, you will receive your kit.
When you receive your test kit, simply swab the inside of your cheek using the swabs provided and return your DNA sample in confidential packaging, via the prepaid envelope supplied.
Once we receive your DNA sample, our lab extracts your DNA’s genetic sequence. This is the code scientists need to match you to the largest database of African genetic sequences in existence.
About 8-10 weeks after you submit your DNA sample, you'll receive your results package with your Certificate of Ancestry and membership to the African Ancestry Online Community. From there your journey into self discovery truly begins.
PIONEER: In 2003, Dr. Gina Paige co-founded African Ancestry, Inc. and in doing so, pioneered a new way of tracing African lineages using genetics, and a new marketplace for people of African descent looking to more accurately and reliably trace their roots. Paige travels the world helping people demystify where they’re from and informing on identities so that they may better understand who they are.
PIONEERING RESEARCHER: Dr. Rick Kittles is Co-founder and Scientific Director of African Ancestry, Inc. It is through his years of research on genetic variation in African peoples, his passion for African history and the movements of its people throughout the world that African Ancestry was created in 2003. Since then, African Ancestry has made its mark as a pioneering force in ancestry tracing, being the first in the industry to geographically assess African lineages to a present-day country of origin.
1. How are African Ancestry’s tests different from other ancestry tests?
We are the only company whose tests place your African ancestry in a present-day country/region in Africa. Other companies will only tell you that your lineage is from Africa but cannot tell you specifically where in Africa.
We are an African American-owned company and do not rely on any universities or foundations for financial support.
We have partnerships with African embassies to help further your connection.
We do not maintain a database of customer genetic information.
2. If I have results from another company’s test, can I send them to you for analysis?
Yes. If your mtDNA sequence or your Y-chromosome markers have African ancestry, we can tell you what present-day country(ies) in Africa that they share ancestry with. Please click here for data requirements. We cannot use data from admixture analyses.
3. How reliable are the tests?
For lineage-based tests, reliability depends on several things such as the size of the database, the sampling of the lineages and the accuracy of lineage matches. Our database is the most comprehensive resource of African lineages available. We have worked with historians, archeologists, anthropologists and other geneticists to build the largest collection of African lineages in the world. We use a sequence similarity score (SSS) measure to determine matches. The SSS measure is a likelihood estimate based on the frequency of identical and closely related (>99%) haplotypes. It is our degree of confidence in your results.
4. How accurate are the MatriClan and PatriClan Tests?
Our results are highly accurate. For about 85% of the people we test we find identical matches in our database. For the remaining people, we find closely related lineages with greater than 95% confidence. Our database is the most comprehensive resource of African lineages available.
5. What are the limitations of the MatriClan and PatriClan Tests?
Our MatriClan and PatriClan tests are not designed to provide you with the ancestry of all of the many lineages that make up who you are. They are designed to determine the ancestry of a direct maternal lineage or a direct paternal lineage. If you want to find out the ancestry of other branches of your family tree, you must enlist other family members to take a test. You have hundreds of other ancestors that could have come from very different places in Africa (or elsewhere in the world). We provide you insight on one of them at a time.
6. How can I determine my paternal ancestry if I am a woman?
In order for a woman to determine her paternal ancestry, she must use the Y-chromosome of a male on her father's side—her brother, father, father's brother, grandfather, etc.
7. Is there some way to trace the ancestry of a family member who has died?
The easiest way to trace the ancestry of a deceased family member is to identify a living relative with the same lineage.
If there is no one available, our lab may be able to extract forensic DNA for an additional fee. Give us a call to discuss your options.
8. What are you going to do with my DNA?
Your DNA is handled confidentially through all steps of the process. We do not share or sell your sequence or markers with any third party. Please click here to review our Terms and Conditions.
9. Will my DNA results be kept confidential?
Absolutely. When your cheek swab is sent to our lab for analysis, there is no personal identification information assigned to your sample. It only has a bar code number attached to it. We also enter into a contract with you to handle your information confidentially. Please review our Terms and Conditions.
10. Can a DNA analysis identify my racial or ethnic identity?
There is no test for racial identification. Race is a social construct, not genetically determined. Similarly, ethnicity is more cultural than biological.
1. What does the results package look like?
Results letter with your ancestry revealed
Printout of your DNA sequence
Certificate of Ancestry
Color brochure with map and explanation of the science
Digital copy of the African Ancestry Guide to African History and Cultures
Exclusive membership to the African Ancestry Online Community
2. How long does it take to get my results?
The estimated timeframe for results is 8-10 weeks after receipt of your swabs. This is not a guarantee.
3. Can you tell what tribe I am from?
We cannot always tell you the particular ethnic group with which you share genetic ancestry. However, in almost all cases where there is African ancestry, we can tell you the present-day country in Africa with which your lineage shares genetic ancestry.
4. Can you estimate how many generations back my lineage goes?
We do not estimate dates for the lineages since there is a large standard error involved in those estimates. The timeframe of our analysis is 500 – 2,000 years.
5. I have several different ancestries. Can your test tell me about my European and/or Native American ancestries?
Our MatriClan and/or PatriClan Tests will only tell you about the lineage for which you submit DNA. We do not analyze your entire genome and provide a percentage breakdown of different ancestries. If we find European or Native American ancestry for the lineage that you trace, we will provide the haplogroup to which you belong.
6. What if you do not find any match for my ancestry?
If we do not find a match for your ancestry, we will notify you by mail. We will keep your sequence on file and re-run it against future updates to our database. Or you can choose to receive a refund.
7. Can the PatriClan Test determine paternity?
No. The PatriClan Test is not a paternity test.