Cheek Swabs Now Accepted by OptiGen – April 2007
Concerns and Caveats
In response to the clear desire voiced by many of OptiGen’s current and potential clients, we have added the option to submit cheek swabs as a DNA source for our tests. We appreciate that this change will make the process of submitting a sample simpler and less costly for our clients. However, there are important factors you should consider when deciding whether to send us a blood sample or a cheek swab.
On rare occasions over the years, we were unable to isolate sufficient high quality DNA from a blood sample to complete testing on that sample. In these isolated cases, OptiGen has requested that the client send us a second blood sample and then we repeated the extraction and testing of this second blood sample at no additional cost to the client. We will continue to honor this policy for blood samples. Due to the higher likelihood that cheek swab samples will yield insufficient DNA, we can not extend free-retesting for cheek swab samples. The full test fee will be charged if a second cheek swab sampling is submitted to replace the first failed sampling. We will, however, allow a replacement submission of a blood sample at no additional charge if the first cheek swab sample fails to yield sufficient DNA.
No Long-Term Storage
The option for long-term storage of sample DNA is not available with cheek swabs due to the low quantity of DNA extracted from such a sample. If long-term storage is desired, a blood sample must be submitted.
No Excess DNA Stored
Optigen has stored excess DNA from a blood sample and relied on that for quality assurance and opportunities to offer a second genetic test for a breed. This benefit is not possible with cheek swab DNA. If additional tests are developed for a breed, new sample will be required.
Cheek swab samples from puppies under about 8 weeks of age – that is, before weaning, are not advised due to the possibility of maternal contamination and/or puppy-to-puppy contamination. OptiGen is not able to detect trace contamination in these samples and clients assume risk of incorrect test result due to contamination of cheek swabs from pups prior to weaning. If puppies must be tested prior to weaning, a blood sample is strongly advised.
Page last updated February 10, 2016
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