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  • Writer's pictureAndy Lee

GEDmatch: Chromosome and Segment Tools for Multiple Kit Analysis

Have you been on GEDmatch and been confused about the Multiple Kit Analysis, wondering what that tool will do for you? Learn a little about the Chromosome and Segment Portions for comparing multiple kits at the same time.

What is the Multiple Kit Analysis Tool?

The GEDmatch Multiple Kit Analysis tool could be confusing. However, very simply, the Multiple Kit Analysis does exactly what it says. It allows you to analyze multiple kits at one time.

I have to say that this tool by itself is worth the $10 a month that you pay GEDmatch because the tools that are a part of it can do so many things for you that would take you hours and hours on end to try to do yourself.

  • Log in to GEDmatch with a Tier 1 Account.

  • Enter in the kit numbers you wish to compare.

You can type this directly or click on the next box, which is all the kits you manage. You can select any of those.

The way that I like to use it most is with the Tag Group Selection.

I can select any of the tag groups that I've already created, and it's automatically going to load those kits into the Multiple Kit Analysis tool.

Chromosome and Segment Multiple Kit Analysis Tools

There are actually five tools:

  • Segment Search

  • Triangulation

  • 2D Chromosome Browser

  • 3D Chromosome Browser

  • Compact Segment Mapper

Using a Tag Group, I'll showcase each of these tools in the video below.

For each tool, I'm going to leave the default value of 7 centimorgans. However, I click to Prevent Hard Breaks.

While the above order shows how GEDmatch arranges these tools, I'm going to discuss them in the order that I use them.

To watch the GEDmatch Matrix overview, watch the video below.

Video: Chromosome and Segment Multiple Kit Analysis

Compact Segment Mapper

With this tool, you will see everyone from your Tag Group. Each person will have a different color or a different format. Some people will have cross-hatched marks, while others have sold colors.

This tool shows which segments people share in common with the main person or the Tag Group's top person.

Sometimes you'll see kits that are light blue and darker blue to indicate kits that share many segments. Other colors, like pinks and purples, maybe share a segment or two. The Compact Segment Mapper allows you to see multiple people's matches and all the segments for it in a really compact spot.

This is a good starting point. Use a Tag Group of people that you know are related to look at more people in particular. For instance, I might want to be looking at three people because they seem to share a DNA segment in the same area. This is a good spot to start triangulation.

Another group down may have four people with different overlapping segments, but it's all in the same general area.

In short, the Compact Segment Mapper allows you to view how many matches line up, similar to the One-to-One Comparison Tool but with just your Tag Group.

3D Chromosome Browser

This tool not only looks at one person compared to everybody else, but everybody is compared to everyone else. The more people you have in your group, the longer some of these pages may take to run.

After the tool runs, you'll see some tables that give you some underlying information.

  • How many segments are shared between people?

  • How many centimorgans are shared between people?

  • How many segments are on each chromosome that is shared?

What you really want to see is a 3D Chromosome Browser.

On the 3d browser, you can rotate things by the X and the y axis. This allows you to see where different connections line up. There will be people along the top and the same people along the side.

You can change to view by chromosome. Some chromosomes are going to have different people in different areas. The colors indicate the size of their match.

The browser took the information from the table and graphed it out. Some people may find this view overwhelming. I actually don't use the 3D Chromosome Browser very much. But some visual people like to see their data in this way.

2D Chromosome Browser

This tool is similar to the Compact Segment Mapper that we looked at initially. This tool compares one person, our main person up here, to everybody else in the Tag Group. The difference is that this view has the information divided up by the segment size and the start and the endpoints. You visualize where that shared segments show on the chromosome.

Triangulation Tool

This segment tool is similar to the triangulation tool that you can get from the GEDmatch home page. The difference is is that you're only showcasing the Tag Group or whatever kits you've entered into the Multiple Kit Analysis.

The results start with your main person up at the top. Then you'll see each kit with two matches - a first match and a second match.

The first match and the second match both match the main person, but they also match each other. The results show you where they match each other.

Segment Search

You can also use the segment search from the GEDmatch home page. But again, you're comparing multiple kits from a Tag Group or that you've entered.

This analysis goes through each chromosome to discover which segments match.

For each result, you'll see the chromosome number and the start and end position. Then you'll see the number of centimorgans between each one.

The nice thing is that you have a graphic display on this tool.

You begin to see those different people have the same segments in common. You can begin to spot some potential triangulation points.

Admittedly, you could have used a triangulation tool to see that as well.

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Try Out the Chromosomes and Segment Tools

These are the five tools in the chromosomes and segment portion of the Multiple Kit Analysis. You don't have to use Tag Groups to use these tools. You can actually manually enter kit numbers.

Multiple Kit Analysis has lots of tools, and it's really easy to get confused, so take it slow. Start trying out each one to see the results and see which ones help your genetic research.

More Tips on Using GEDmatch

Explore the following blog posts to continue your genetic genealogy education.

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