As the immigration debate rages on in the country, after President Donald Trump signed a controversial executive order, something of a quagmire has come up. Should a nation made up of immigrants really start banning people from migrating to it?

The fact that most of the population of the country is made up of people whose ancestral roots lay elsewhere in the world can now be scientifically validated. AncestryDNA is a subsidiary of genealogy website Ancestry.com, and deals in consumer genetics to help you find out how your ancestors migrated to the U.S.

The research team behind the endeavor has gone through 500 million points of genetic data and then formed 770,000 genotyped individuals belonging to the U.S. These, in turn, have been linked with 20 million genealogical records to form collective migration patterns in North America across a period stretching across hundreds of years.

By collating the information, AncestryDNA found that many families followed each other, intermarried among themselves and settled close to one another.

“We developed a novel scientific methodology that looks at how specific groups of people are connected through their DNA, what places they called home, and which migration paths they followed to get there — allowing genetics to reveal the history in a more recent time period than ever before, ” the website says.

Events such as wars, diseases, climate change and religious conversion also affected migration patterns.

The information could be of great help to the African-American community, many of whose members struggle to trace their ancestry, which got lost due to slavery. In contrast to this, genetic information was easier to trace for people of European origin.

Similarly, some of the communities have maintained their genetic markers. The Amish, for example, have been termed a genetically isolated subset of German immigrants, compared to other U.S. citizens whose genetic markers have been lost over the course of history; they have more or less maintained theirs since migrating to the country.