10 June 2007

DNA Testing Approved for CGS Membership Applications

Comunn Chloinn Ghriogair
Founded 1822 – Charity No. SCO 07391
Patron: Sir Malcolm MacGregor of MacGregor Bart

Press release for immediate publication
June 10h 2007

At the Council meeting held on Friday June 8th, 2007, the Clan Gregor Society of Scotland agreed that it will, from this point onwards, accept into full membership of the Society individuals with ANY surname who can show, through DNA testing, that they have a DNA signature which matches, at the accepted degrees of mutational difference, that of the main MacGregor DNA signature.

Council has taken this decision in recognition of the fact that, as a result of Clan Gregor’s past turbulent history, individuals were required to assume names which were totally divorced from their actual clan name, and although such name changes were often documented at the time, others were not. The Clan Gregor Society Council recognises that the ancestors of some MacGregors chose not to return to the original clan name for a variety of reasons, and that advances in DNA testing now allows the descendants of such individuals to be identified as belonging to the clan.

In taking this decision the Council is conscious that it is the first Clan Society to promote membership on the basis of a DNA signature and it is to be hoped that other clans will follow this lead.


The Clan Gregor Society will admit to full membership of the Society anyone who can show 23 markers out of 25, or, up to 31 (but normally 33) markers out of 37 in common with the main MacGregor DNA profile which is found as kit number 2124 on the Family Tree DNA public website for the Clan Gregor Project, and additionally, where marker DYS385a normally equals 10 (ten). We take this as the modal signature. For mutations this equates to a genetic distance of up to 6 (six) on 37 markers.

The Clan Gregor Society also recognises that there is a separate Irish based DNA profile for M(a)cGregors which is distinct from the main M(a)cGregor profile, indicating a probable separate origin for the name. Council will therefore also admit to full membership on the basis of this DNA signature, again without relation to surname. The same broad restrictions apply as in the previous paragraph except that for this group the reference kit will be 4715 but with the following alterations: marker DYS464b will be considered as having a modal value of 16 and DYS460 to have a modal value of 11. For the moment the scores on CDY a and b will be discounted in determining the Irish signature and therefore the match which will be considered is up to 30 out of 35 (that is, a maximum genetic distance of 5).

We believe that DNA testing now provides an extremely reliable tool for confirming surname-based descent based on analysis of the Y chromosome.


Professor Richard McGregor
The Clan Gregor Society of Scotland.
10th June 2007