When we work with DNA in our family history research, one of the first steps is to separate the DNA matches into groups or genetic networks. The Leeds Method by Dana Leeds was developed a few years ago as a way to separate DNA matches manually. This method was revolutionary in genetic genealogy!
Evert-Jan Blom of Genetic Affairs was the first to create a readily available way of automating separating DNA matches into groups. This process is easy to order, and it takes only minutes to receive an interactive report. Genetic Affairs licensed the AutoCluster tool to MyHeritage and GEDmatch. Tools for Family Tree DNA, 23andMe, and Living DNA are simple to access at GeneticAffairs.com.
The original AutoCluster analysis showed the colored clusters of DNA matches shown in order of size. In the reports, the top left cluster has the most DNA matches related to the tester and to each other. The clusters decrease in size/number of DNA matches as they go down and to the right on the page, placing the smallest clusters at the bottom right.
I ordered the “Recluster MyHeritage AutoClusters” to have the clusters aligned according to the connections between the clusters. There are two ways to get to the Recluster your old AutoCluster or MyHeritage AutoCluster page.
1. Log in to GeneticAffairs.com, from the Members homepage, scroll down to see this image and select the highlighted option.
2. From the top menu bar, select “Analyses,” and select “Recluster MyHeritage clusters.”
The following page will open, Step 1 is to choose the HTML file from the unzipped AutoCluster report you received from MyHeritage or Genetic Affairs for Family Tree DNA, 23andMe, or GEDmatch file from over 2 years ago. Step 2 is to click on “Perform reclustering analysis.” The report will be returned quickly. See the comments below for more information from EJ Blom of Genetic Affairs.
When the AutoCluster report is reclustered, it shows the clusters grouped and aligned according to the connections between DNA matches.
For example, some clusters have DNA matches (2nd cousins) who share great-grandparents. The cluster next to that one has DNA matches (3rd cousins) who share 2nd great-grandparents on the same family line. The gray boxes represent a DNA match who could fit into more than one cluster because they share DNA with 2nd cousins and 3rd cousins who are listed in the 2 different clusters.
This is the reclustered report with the same DNA matches.
As you can see, there are still 24 clusters, but the arrangement is different. The clusters that have gray boxes outside of them indicate that the corresponding DNA match belongs in the cluster directly above it and directly to the right or left of it.
The reordering helps me quickly see which clustered groups are closely related. With the original cluster report, I needed to correlate the gray boxes and the clusters which were sometimes very spread apart on the page.
Reclustering the AutoClusters makes it easier to see connections and helps your brain do fewer mental gymnastics to correlate and extract needed information. Give it a try, I think you’ll like it!!