Journal article

Relatedness in the post-genomic era: is it still useful?

Doug Speed, David J Balding

Nature Reviews Genetics | NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP | Published : 2015


Relatedness is a fundamental concept in genetics but is surprisingly hard to define in a rigorous yet useful way. Traditional relatedness coefficients specify expected genome sharing between individuals in pedigrees, but actual genome sharing can differ considerably from these expected values, which in any case vary according to the pedigree that happens to be available. Nowadays, we can measure genome sharing directly from genome-wide single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data; however, there are many such measures in current use, and we lack good criteria for choosing among them. Here, we review SNP-based measures of relatedness and criteria for comparing them. We discuss how useful pedigre..

View full abstract

University of Melbourne Researchers


Awarded by UK Medical Research Council

Awarded by Medical Research Council

Funding Acknowledgements

The authors thank G. Hellenthal and D. Kennett (both University College London), and M. Beaumont (University of Bristol) for discussion. This work is funded by the UK Medical Research Council under grant G0901388, with support from the National Institute for Health Research University College London Hospitals Biomedical Research Centre. Access to Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium data was authorized as work related to the project "Genome-wide association study of susceptibility and clinical phenotypes in epilepsy".