Arkansas Genomics

FAQ

What is DNA?

DNA stands for deoxyribonucleic acid.  We inherit half of our DNA from our mother and half from our father. We all have similar DNA content, with the exception of identical twins, no two humans have identical DNA.

Where is DNA found in the body?

DNA is found within cells (e.g. white blood cells, sperm cells, cells lining body cavities, skin cells) in the human body.  Most of the DNA is found in the nucleus of the cell.  This type of DNA is known as nuclear DNA.  A small amount of DNA is found in another part of the cell known as a mitochondrion.  This type of DNA is known as mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA).

Why is mtDNA used?

In most cases nuclear DNA is used for analysis. Examples of this type of DNA include blood, semen, saliva and hair roots. Hair shafts do not contain nuclear DNA therefore mtDNA testing is required. Nuclear DNA present in samples is sometimes destroyed by environmental conditions such as heat and moisture. Because mtDNA is much smaller and contains more copies than nuclear DNA it is better suited for testing when the sample is degraded.  Mitochondrial DNA is also used to trace family ties on account it is only passed on by the mother.

What types of forensic samples can be submitted for DNA analysis?

A wide range of samples can be used to obtain DNA profiles. Typical samples include blood, bloodstains, oral swabs, vaginal swabs, breast swabs, semen, cigarette butts, drinking containers, bones, teeth and hair. Other items include chewing gum, tooth brushes, sweat from clothing or objects touched may be swabbed for sweat resulting in DNA profiles.

Is your laboratory accredited?

Yes.  Arkansas Genomics is Arkansas’ first and only FQS-I ISO 17025 Accredited Private DNA Laboratory. Accreditation is only mandatory in two states and is completely voluntary in Forensic Laboratories. As a result, it is important to choose and confirm your tests are performed by an accredited agency.

Why is accreditation important?

Forensic DNA testing and Relationship DNA testing is not regulated in 48 states.  Accreditation is the only safeguard a private individual has to know that a laboratory is meeting certain Quality Control Standards set forth by the DNA Advisory Board (DAB). Not all labs offering DNA testing is accredited.

Can my Paternity Test be used in Court?

Yes! To be admissible in court a paternity test must meet two requirements.  First, the test must be performed by an accredited laboratory.  Second, the test must have been collected, shipped and stored in a manner that establishes a chain of custody.  This allows the laboratory to prove that the individuals whose names appear on the paternity test are truly the individuals who provided the DNA samples that were tested.  This is usually accomplished by attaching a photo of the collected individuals to the form used to collect the sample. The collector also checks a photo ID such as a driver’s license, and takes a fingerprint of the tested individuals.

What is DNA paternity testing?

A DNA paternity test determines the relationship between the child and the alleged father.

Our DNA profile is made up from DNA that we get from our parents: 50% from our mother and 50% from our father. Every cell in our body contains DNA that can be traced to our parents. In DNA Paternity testing, a DNA sample is taken from the child, mother, and the alleged father and examined to determine if the child’s DNA contains DNA from the alleged father.

Do I need authorization from an attorney to have the paternity test done?

No. Private individuals can request a DNA test without a formal request from an attorney or a court order.

What do I need to do to get a paternity test?

In order to get a paternity DNA test all you need to do is call our toll free number 1-877-DNA-LAB1 to speak with a case manager. They will recommend the best DNA testing service to answer your paternity questions.  Once you’re ready to proceed we can arrange a sample collection appointment that is convenient for you.

Can I use my test results to obtain child support?

Yes! Arkansas Genomics establishes a chain of custody in all legal tests that allows our test results to stand up in a court of law. Many or our clients need their test results to obtain child support and for other legal proposes.

Is DNA paternity testing accurate?

The probability of paternity is a statistical measure of the likelihood of the biological relationship. DNA paternity testing is 99.999% accurate.

A complete legal report describes the likelihood of the paternity in terms of either inclusion, a positive match; or exclusion, no match.

In the case of inclusion, a statistical ratio is calculated that determines how much more likely the alleged father is to being the biological father than a random man from a given population.
An exclusion result will result in 0% probability because the genetic profiles of the child and alleged father do not match, therefore there is statistically no chance that the two can be biological related.

Do you offer contract pricing?

Yes! Contract pricing is offered to larger volume testing requests usually accepted from State Crime Labs or Child Support Testing Facilities. Please contact us for your contract price quote.