How Reliable Is The Home DNA Test?

Home DNA test results can give you the answers you need to paternity questions, provided of course that all relevant parties are willing. DNA test technology is still young by scientific standards, but it has advanced dramatically in the twenty-five years that it has been commercially active. It has been used for a wide variety of purposes, such as proving that people convicted of serious crimes were in fact innocent, and helping to solve paternity issues from nearly a century ago by taking samples from living relatives.

Ever since the discovery of unique DNA and how it is left behind in the course of normal life, there have been people eager to use it to solve all kinds of problems. The police forces and legal system have invested heavily in trying to improve detection and accuracy rates, and those involved in family issues have looked to DNA to do what nothing has been able to do conclusively before. Because of the way DNA is created in the body, and the way it degrades over time when the body is dead, paternity applications are among the most successful.

The DNA of each individual is not totally different, but there are strands which are unique. These strands are created from the genes of the mother and father. Where DNA is left at crime scenes and there are no living people to test it against, it can be difficult to draw definite conclusions. In paternity, where all parties are living and present, and where the samples can be tested within minutes of being extracted, there is virtually guaranteed success as long as the procedure is carried out properly.

There are a few potential problems with DNA testing. Most of these affect more advanced applications of the technique, but there are some which can affect a home DNA paternity test. There have been instances, even in very serious criminal investigations, where swabs used to take DNA samples have not been properly sterilized and have still had DNA on them from the factory where they were manufactured. If these errors can happen in these cases, the potential for contamination using a home kit is obviously real.

The home DNA test will work perfectly well if the instructions are followed carefully. DNA can become contaminated, but this is much easier to defend against when the samples are going to be taken in one place, analyzed in the same place, and used within a very short space of time. Where there are legal issues, the results of the tests can be kept under observation and guarded until they are needed in court. The results are admissible in the law courts, so long as it can be proven that the samples are genuinely from the relevant home DNA test.

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