An effective means of retrieving ethnic information on a population sample for which there is already medical information may be surname analysis, but this has never been tested. Thus, two methods of surname classification were used to select individuals with German, Italian, Irish and Polish surnames from a sample of 2306 Milwaukee immigrants and offspring of immigrants. This sample represented only those individuals who identified all grandparents as coming from the same European geopolitical unit, and all had been previously tested for Glm(f, z, a and x), G3m(b0, bl, b3, b4 and g), A2m(l and 2), and Km(l). Selected sera were tested for G3in(s, t, c3 and c5). The Gm haplotype frequencies of the surname groups were then compared (by z-scores) with those of the German, Italian, Irish, and Polish groups as defined by grandparental origin. There are no statistically significant differences in haplotype frequency between the ethnic categories as determined by grandparents and those determined by surname even when both sexes are considered. Medical records in this country are not likely to include such a high percentage of “pures” but the researcher attempting to use medical records would be wise to select a sample considering both surname and home address in cities with localized ethnic communities.
Stevenson, J C.; Brown, R J.; and Schanfield, M S.
"Surname Analysis as a Sampling Method for Recovery of Genetic Information,"
2, Article 5.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/humbiol/vol55/iss2/5