Everything you need to know about forensic DNA testing

Want to know more about forensic DNA testing? Then here’s some background information to help you get started:

DNA – what’s it all about?

DNA exists in all the cells of our body so it can be extracted from numerous parts including hair, hair roots, blood, tissue and bodily fluids. You may be surprised to learn that 99.9% of the DNA of all humans is identical; yes yours and ours is mostly the same. It’s that minute 0.1% that differs from one person to another and which makes us distinct – forming our genetic markers. It’s these genetic markers that take centre stage when it comes to DNA testing.

The origins of forensic DNA testing

Forensic DNA testing owes much to the work of Dr Alec Jeffreys of the University of Leicester who back in 1984 discovered that DNA contained sequences that repeated; and that these sequences were different for each person. It was his work that laid the groundwork for the various DNA tests now available.

The uses of forensic DNA testing

DNA testing has since developed to have many applications from establishing the biological parents of a child, to the identification of genetic conditions and forensic testing that identifies the suspects or victims of crime for example. We can probably all bring to mind legal judgements that have turned on, or been overturned, as a result of DNA. However, forensic DNA testing can also be used to find out more about your genetic ancestry and to help resolve cases of disputed inheritances involving deceased individuals for example.

DNA testing in the headlines

It’s not many days that go by without DNA playing a part in the news in one way or another. One recent case to hit the headlines was that involving the case of the Salvador Dali and a claimant to his estate – however, the most recent media reports suggest that the latest round of DNA tests have come back negative. While a fascinating case involving genetic ancestry resulted in the residents of the Cotswold village of Bledington finding that their origins were far more diverse than they anticipated – just 42.5% of their DNA was Anglo-Saxon.

The advances in forensic DNA testing

DNA testing has advanced greatly in recent years, and the size of sample needed to extract DNA has fallen dramatically. Now DNA can be extracted from ‘touch samples’ – samples so tiny they may be invisible to the human eye, where a few cells have been left behind for example when one person touches an object or another person. It’s also now possible to extract DNA from a complex mix of materials.

How forensic DNA testing could help you

Forensic DNA testing could help you if you are involved in a dispute over a will, inheritance or probate. However, the complexities of, and advances in DNA testing make it all the more important that these tests are undertaken in appropriate facilities in the right way, by trained personnel. That’s where dadcheckgold could help you – as we are one of just a few companies in the UK who can provide DNA testing service for legal purposes – so contact us to discuss your requirements.