Just in case anyone finds this useful:
The data from 23andMe contains information about SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms), which are basically single base pairs in your DNA, eg. AT, AG, TT, etc.
However, in many academic papers, the authors usually write about entire genes, which are many SNPs that come together to form a trait. Alleles are simply different configurations of these SNPs for the gene that encodes for something.
- A gene could be the color of your eyes
- Some Alleles for the eye color gene could be ones that encode blue, green, or brown eyes
- The SNPs inside each Allele would be different, for example, green eyes could be AA, TT, GG whereas blue eyes could be AG, GG, TT
Therefore, since 23andMe contains information about individual SNPs, there's still work required to understand the SNPs for each Allele. I'm currently trying to figure out where I can find this information.