Why would I collect my loved ones DNA?
Collecting a loved ones DNA before cremation or interment is the last chance you have to keep what made your loved one unique. The current services being offered for genetic testing includes ancestry testing, your family’s predisposition to disease, allowing your medical professional to design treatments, or even start preventative measures to reduce the risk of the diseases developing. Since the DNA of the individual is unique to that person, it can also be used for identifying the individual in such cases as paternity, maternity, or even siblingship should any questions arise in the future. Without a reliable genetic sample, these questions can never be answered definitively.
How does the process work?
The DNA collected by DNA Memorial arrives to you stabilized onto a solid white crystalline powder. This binds the DNA tightly, not allowing it to break into pieces or to be damaged by environmental effects that are detrimental to untreated DNA samples. These damaging factors include but are not limited to exposure to water, UV rays, oxygen, heat, bacteria, mold, and even the body’s own decomposition process. Once the DNA is removed from the stabilizing powder, it is suspended in liquid form and is acceptable for any and all genetic testing.
What do I do with the DNA that has been collected?
Since the DNA is in a sterilized state of suspended animation, it does not require long term deep freeze storage. Your DNA Memorial sample can stored in the safety of your own home at room temperature. We would recommend it be kept in a safe spot, such as a safety deposit box. Keeping the vial out of direct sunlight and in room temperature conditions ensures that the DNA can be extracted and used for many years to come.
When can the DNA be used?
The DNA collected can be used at any time for genetic testing. Since the DNA is extracted, purified of all inhibitors, and stabilized by being bound to the powder, it is in a state of suspended animation. This gives the DNA an indefinite lifespan.
Where can I send my DNA for future genetic testing?
The DNA would first be sent back to DNA Memorial so that they can unbind the DNA from the stabilizing white crystalline powder and suspended in a pH controlled liquid. This sample is now ready for whatever test you would prefer. DNA Memorial recommends the following laboratories for analysis:
Ancestry: Family Tree DNA https://www.familytreedna.com
Identification testing such as paternity: Orchid Pro DNA https://www.pro-adn.com
For any medical testing, we highly recommend you talk with your medical professional or a genetic counsellor to discuss the best options for you and your family.