Y Chromosome Testing finds extensive use in establishing the existence of a biological relationship between males. The test can solely be done between males as it is only males who have a Y chromosome.
Chromosomes carry all our genetic information. We have a total of 46 chromosomes and these exist in pairs in our cells. Females always have XX chromosome pairs and males have XY chromosome pairs. The Y chromosome is thus, always inherited and passed down the male line. The Y chromosome is not only passed from father to son and so forth, but it undergoes little mutation across generations.
The Y chromosome carried the genes that determine the characteristics of males. When the X and Y chromosome are compared, the X chromosome is far more complex and carries a much greater number of genes.
Some of the uses of the y chromosome test
In genealogy DNA testing, it is possible to determine the male lineage and tracing your genetic history back thousands of years. The testing in this case relies on what are known as short tandem repeats and is of great interest for those wishing to know more about their deep roots. The test will link you with certain anthropological groups and geographical regions- you can thus, know more about who your ancestors were and what part of the world they came from.
In relationship DNA testing the test is often used between relatives to establish paternity. For example, two brothers wish to know if they have the same biological father can do a sibling DNA test. However, the dad is dead or the two brothers do not wish him to be aware that they are trying to answer such a question. In such an instance, the brothers can do a Y Chromosome Test which will tell them if they share the same Y chromosome profile. If they share a Y chromosome profile, this shows they also share a common paternal line. If they do not share the same chromosome pattern, then they do share any common male ancestor.
However, if the brothers think there is the possibility that their fathers are related the test will not be able to confirm whether they share the same biological father but only that they have a common paternal line.
Females can do an X Chromosome Test if they wish to know whether they share the same father. Click here to read what this type of test is all about.
Y chromosome testing is useful; it can also be used to connect males and help genealogists map family trees. Since surnames are passed from father to son in many countries, Y Chromosome Testing can determine whether people sharing the same surname are related.