Hello again Donna,
The mtDNA passes to a son from his mother but he does not pass it on to his children.
If I understand how it works for certain, the son above who has inherited his mother's mtDNA can link back to his mother, then her mother and her mother before her.
Only to the maternal female line.
The (female) sister of the brother listed above WOULD pass on the mtDNA to her children. Male and female who could then research back through the same female lines.
This would not give you any information about any male ancestors on either side, maternal or paternal, and would go back through the mother's maiden surnames.
The link above should take you to the DNA Forum and you can get a more helpful answer from some of the pros about DNA, mtDNA, yDNA. I am on shakey ground when I start acting like I know what I'm talking about when it comes to this science. I have to go look up what I need to know about it myself so hate to think I might steer you wrong. You can also google "mtDNA" and get a lot of information the hard way ):-)
Good luck. DNA is the way to go. Results may not be immediate and testing can be expensive but long term cannot fail. Just may not happen in the near future. The data bases must get larger all the time for people to be able to compare results. That is the only way it will work in the long run.
My advice above all else is to have your elders submit samples of their DNA. When you don't have many elders left in your family you may lose some of your chances if you only have one male cousin left of your male lineage for instance.
Whatever you decide, good luck, Linda McKee
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