Genetic mapping and social media have been a powerful tool in their respective sphere for a long while. In recent years, the combined power of the two technologies–social DNA technology–has created a buzz in tracing ancestry, and creating family trees. The idea behind this phenomenon is to identify an individual’s ethnic background and find possible biological relationships with others by comparing specific points between the individual’s genome and those of others in the genome database.
Social DNA technology is especially useful in genealogy research, where people are interested to know who they are and where they come from. The technology’s benefits are even more evident when used to identifying the long-lost parents or relatives of an adopted child. These days, it is quite easy to stumble upon an article in a newspaper describing how social DNA technology has helped someone to find his or her relatives. Some of these relatives may live in a different continent while some of them may live just right down the street!
In my view, as both genetic mapping and social media grow, social DNA technology will continue to mature. Concurrently, scientists will be able improve its methodologies. Over time, the identification can reveal even more useful details about a participant’s background. Furthermore, it is foreseeable that additional layers of relationships could be identified as more people participate in the genome database. In other words, as the database enlarges, the circle of relatives or the family tree augments.