Thursday, December 28, 2017

23andMe Restores Ability To See Ancestry Reports of DNA Relatives

23andMe FINALLY restored our ability to see the chromosome paintings and ancestry report of the people we are sharing with in your DNA Relatives list. This was another quiet and soft roll-out or restoration by the DTC personal genome service, and only appears to affect some US customer accounts for now.

I've been campaigning a long time for 23andMe to restore this feature and raised the issue in several forums and blogs. Our ability to see our DNA relative's chromosome paintings was absconded when 23andMe decided to upgrade its interface and Web site (aka the New Experience) a couple of years ago. It was replaced with an "Ancestries in common" tool but without a chromosome painting. As a result the "Ancestries in common" tool wasn't very useful: the feature shows ALL of the ethnicity assignments shared between you and another person but you may not genetically share most of those ethnicity assignments through a common ancestor or ancestral couple. 

There are some caveats. If you're on chip version 3 (v3) or earlier, your DNA Relatives includes anyone you invited to share with you (whether related or not) but the new feature is missing. You will have to access it from  "Your Connections" option on your Tools drop-down menu. Or you can invite your relatives and friends using the Share & Compare tool.

For v4 and v5 customers, you can only see the ancestry compositions and chromosome paintings of the DNA relatives and friends who accepts your request to share ancestry or ancestry+health reports. Even if your DNA Relative is "Open Sharing" with you, a sharing request must be sent.

Now let me show you how to access your DNA relative's Ancestry Composition reports:

(1) On your Ancestry Composition reports page (v4, v5 customers), there is now new large module (located top, right), with the words "View a connection's results": 

(2) You can also access your connections (v3 customers) by selecting from the Tools menu at the top of your 23andMe page:

(3) Finally a list of Your Connections (or DNA Relatives) that you're sharing reports with will appear on a drop-down list (I removed the names below).  When you select a person and the View button (to the right), you will be able to see their Ancestry Composition percentages AND their chromosome paintings:
Once you choose the person -- here I picked "DM" --  you can it see it takes me right to DM's Ancestry Composition report: 

And DM's chromosome painting:

So if you're a 23andMe customer, you will be extremely happy at the return of our ability to see the ancestry reports and chromosome paintings of the people we're sharing with. We will able to better trace and see the ethnicity of the segments we share with those relatives, which I discuss at length in my Ethnicity Chromosome Mapping blog here

King Genome's Wisdom: Don't forget to "Request to share" (as shown below) with your DNA Relatives even if you are Open Sharing with them; the "Sharing" option is located at bottom of the page when you click on any of your DNA relatives. You can also invite Friends by going to the "Share & Compare" feature and inviting them by their 23andMe log-in e-mail. 

Happy Exploring!


  1. Thanks for making this easy to share!

  2. Thanks for this great update, TL. I do wish the confidence level feature was restored as well. Nonetheless, 23andMe made the right move here.