R-L21 MacWho

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About us

The MacWho project is limited to persons who are MC14+ or who have the STR signature characteristic of the MacWho as explained below.

This very distinct Y DNA cluster appears mainly in a male lines which appear to be Scottish in origin. It seems probable that we share a common ancestor there, perhaps in the Middle Ages. The nickname of the cluster comes about because we do not know what surname this person had, but we think he may have been Scottish.

In terms of SNP clade, the cluster is, R-L21>DF13>ZZ10>MC14>BY246/248

Defining STR marker values include the following. Note that it is important to look at more than one marker to define clusters like this.

1. With 12 markers,

DYS390 = 25 instead of 24. Approximately 15% of R1b people in Western Europe have such a value, so this is not very uncommon.

DYS391 = 10 instead of 11. Again this is not uncommon, approximately 32%of R1b people share this value.

DYS385a-b = 15-15 instead of 11-14. .

DYS439 = 11 instead of 12. About 15% of R1b people have this particular value.

2. With 25 markers, we also see two quite unusual variations from what is normally seen in R1b:

DYS458 = 15 instead of 17. This is rare. About 2% of R1b men in Western Europe have this value for this marker.

DYS449 = 30 or 31instead of 29. About 11% of Western European R1b men have this value for this marker.

3. With 37 markers we find these peculiar values:

DYS460 = 10 instead of 11. (Like about 18% of Western European R1b men.)

DYS456 = 15 instead of16. (Like about 34% of Western European R1b men.)

DYS570 = 16 instead of 17. (Like about 14% of Western European R1b men.)

4. With 67 markers we find these peculiar values:

DYS481 = 23 instead of 22

5. With 111 markers,

Y-GATA-C4(also known as DYS635) = 24 instead of 23.

DYS444 = 13 instead of 12.

DYS452 = 12 instead of 11.


So far the most distinctive is DYF399 – an extremely interesting multipart marker tested for by DNA Fingerprint. The 18 and 19 results are amongst the lowest ever seen for R1b haplotypes.

For DYS485 we find 16 being normal instead of 15.