DNA sample collection tips

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General tips

  • It is suggested that you do a couple vigorous mouth rinses with water (and/or mouthwash) around 5-10 minutes before collecting the DNA sample from your mouth. This will reduce bacterial contamination (by loosening naturally-occuring bacteria, which can accumulate in biofilms on your cheeks, gums, and teeth), help eliminate other potential contaminants, and improve the quality of results from DNA sequencing.

Tips for Full Genomes Corporation tests (e.g. Y Elite)

  • Saliva collection instructions may be found here
  • When providing a saliva sample: you may want to consider trying to gently loosen up some cheek cells with your tongue, in order to get a higher DNA content in the saliva.
  • Use the provided mailing envelope to send the saliva sample. When mailing from the US:
    • if the kit instructs to mail the sample within the U.S., the sample may be returned using the USPS. Four (4) "forever stamps" should be more than sufficient, or you can have it weighed at a local post office to determine the shipping charges more precisely.
    • if the kit instructs to mail the sample outside the U.S., the sample may be returned via USPS (lower cost, slower) or FedEx (higher cost, faster). In either case, you will need to prepare an accompanying customs form. You can specify "scientific genealogy sample" on the customs form. The collection kit containing saliva sample has no commercial value at this point, and you may specify "No commercial value". In the unlikely event the shipment encounters issues at customs, contact project administrators for guidance. You may also refer to tips from the International Society for Genetic Genealogy.