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  Home -> FAQs -> Forensic Services

Forensic Services FAQs

  1. What forensic services do you offer?
  2. Is DNA Diagnostics Center an accredited forensics lab?
  3. Are your forensic results compatible with CODIS?
  4. What is your chain of custody procedure?
  5. How much of an evidence sample is needed to obtain DNA results?
  6. What is the best sample to take from a dead body for DNA testing?
  7. Can the presence of blood or semen be detected on an item of clothing or other materials/objects?
  8. Are you able to get a DNA profile from urine?
  9. Can you test hair without the root?
  10. I have a sample with a male/female mixture, but no male DNA profile was obtained from standard testing. Is there a way to obtain a male profile?
  11. Who will help me with case issues?
  12. When should Y-STR testing be used?
  13. Are the results confidential?
  14. How do I interpret a forensic DNA report?
 

  1. What forensic services do you offer?
    We provide evidence screening, semen and blood detection, DNA analysis of evidentiary material and reference standards, criminal paternity testing, expert witness testimony, consultation, and legal support. The standard turnaround time for our services is 4 weeks. Expedited processing is available - please contact us for more information.
  2. Is DNA Diagnostics Center an accredited forensics lab?
    Yes. With a laboratory staffed with DNA experts with over 150 years of experience and 30 years in the forensics specialty area, DDC is Forensic Quality Services-International-accredited for ISO 17025 compliance, accredited by ASCLAD/LAB-International, and licensed by the New York State Department of Health. We conduct all casework in strict accordance with the DNA Advisory Board guidelines. DDC also employs a quality assurance program that is in accordance with "The Quality Assurance Standards for Forensic DNA Testing Laboratories and Convicted Offender DNA Databasing Laboratories" issued by the FBI Director.

  3. Are your forensic results compatible with CODIS?
    Yes. We use the 13-core CODIS loci for DNA testing.

  4. What is your chain of custody procedure?
    Our chain of custody procedure is in strict accordance with the DNA Advisory Board guidelines. We require a chain of custody form to accompany the evidence at all times. DDC can provide you with chain of custody forms.

  5. How much of an evidence sample is needed to obtain DNA results?
    This depends on the condition of the sample and the type of testing performed. We specialize in unusual and difficult forensic samples. Contact us to discuss the details involved with your case.

  6. What is the best sample to take from a dead body for DNA testing?
    Blood, tissue or hair roots can be collected from a body. If the body is decomposed, the best samples are long bones such as the humerus or femur. However, we can also work with teeth.

  7. Can the presence of blood or semen be detected on an item of clothing or other materials/objects?
    Yes. Testing can be performed to confirm the presence of blood, sperm and/or semen in a sample.

  8. Are you able to get a DNA profile from urine?
    Yes. A profile can be obtained from urine.

  9. Can you test hair without the root?
    Yes. Instead of using nuclear DNA testing, we would use mitochondrial DNA testing.

  10. I have a sample with a male/female mixture, but no male DNA profile was obtained from standard testing. Is there a way to obtain a male profile?
    Yes. Y-STR testing can be used to obtain a male profile in these instances. However, a minimum amount of male DNA must be present. If there are multiple male contributors in a sample, Y-STR testing may also help to differentiate the individual contributors.

  11. What kind of reference sample is required?
    For reference samples, we prefer buccal swabs or blood cards, but we will also accept whole blood. All three sample types produce equally accurate results. We will provide you with buccal swab collection kits. If you are sending whole blood, please use appropriate shipping materials to prevent breakage. You can have a reference sample collected at one of our convenient collection sites nationwide. We can also schedule sample collections at correctional facilities. Please contact us to schedule this collection.

  12. Who will help me with case issues?
    DDC provides informative training seminars on the collection of evidence for DNA analysis. The seminar will include information on DNA theory, evidence handling, and serology. The trainees will take part in hands-on demonstrations and will participate in mock crime scenes of various degrees of difficulty.

  13. Are the results confidential?
    Our dedicated staff maintains the strictest confidentiality when dealing with all aspects of casework.

  14. How do I interpret a forensic DNA report?
    The forensics DNA report lists the samples tested and a short description of the procedures performed on the samples. It also lists the laboratory’s findings on whether matches were found among the tested samples.

    The three possible interpretations for the results of a forensic DNA test are as follows: match, non-match, or inconclusive. A match means that the DNA profile obtained from the evidence sample is consistent with the DNA profile obtained from the known reference sample (ie. suspect). A non-match means that an individual’s DNA profile is not consistent with the DNA profile obtained from the evidence sample. An inconclusive result is arrived at when no data could be obtained from the samples submitted, most likely because there was not enough DNA or the DNA was of poor quality. We use DNAView and eDNA, the two most widely used statistical programs in the industry, to generate the data for the report.

   
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