Since DNA extraction services have been used increasingly more for the purposes of determining paternity and tying criminals to specific crime scenes, it has become important to understand how extractions benefit clients. More people need to understand the nature of DNA and what researchers do in labs to get definitive results from testing. Here are some basic things to know about DNA and how it is collected.
How long does a DNA sample last?
Once a professional tester collects, DNA, there may be a circumstance that prevents the DNA from being tested right away. If the DNA is needed as evidence in a court case, for example, they may be unforeseen delays that stop testing. Collected samples can last up to four years, provided they are preserved properly. If a dry sample is held at room temperature, it can last up to three months, though most testing facilities take extra measure to preserve them for the fullest possible term. If someone who gives a sample has to hold onto the sample for a few days before submitting it to a lab, the sample should never be left in a very humid environment.
What about DNA samples from deceased or missing persons?
DNA is available for a person who is deceased if it was properly stored after an autopsy was performed or if the sample was collected before the death and analyzed in a lab. There are situations where a DNA sample may not exist or an autopsy is not performed. In those cases, other family members can give DNA samples. It does not always have to be an immediate family member. Cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents can give viable samples that give conclusive results.
Are the results recognized everywhere?
Results from testing are recognized across many states. New York, however, has state regulations in place that require testing to be done in a more controlled way that honors statewide requirements. It is important to know beforehand whether or not a DNA extraction and test will be recognized as legal and conclusive.
Extraction services have given legal representatives, law enforcement officers, scientists and researchers and others much insight into tough issues like paternity, criminal innocence or guilt, diseases and human evolution. More organizations and individuals are trusting the integrity of this kind of testing to solve riddles that would have remained unsolved in decades past. It only takes a willingness to submit the DNA and faith in the nature of science.