DNA Testing has now become widespread and economically accessible to a larger number of people, the cost of a DNA test will vary according to a variety of factors, including the quality of the test, type of test and number of people participating in the test.
Quality of the DNA test
The quality of a DNA test will be reflected in the price of the test, and ordering a cheaper test may be done at the expense of the level of reliability and precision of the results. The quality of the test will depend upon how accurate and advanced the technology used to analyse the DNA is. In addition, the level of quality of the test will also depend on the number of genetic loci analysed. A locus is a specific area of the DNA and the greater the number of loci the greater the accuracy of the test results. In modern day DNA testing, a good quality DNA test will take into consideration at least 21 genetic loci. At homeDNAdirect we test 21.
Number of persons participating
The price of a DNA test will also depend on the number of people participating in the test. In a standard paternity test a total price will usually be given for the analysis of DNA samples of one alleged father and a sample from the child. In cases where more than one father needs to be tested these can be included in the same test, at an additional cost per sample included. Most testing companies will recommend the inclusion of a sample taken from the mother, as this will strengthen the results. This service is usually offered at no extra cost.
Turnaround times for the DNA test
Many companies will offer you the option of having your test results in a shortened space of time, sometimes as quickly as 24 hours. This service is useful in cases where the results are needed urgently. Choosing the ‘Express’ service will add to the cost of the test.
Country of origin
The market economy of the country in which the laboratory is situated will also affect the price of your DNA test, the more widespread the use of DNA tests is the cheaper the tests will tend to be. This is due to what we call economies of scale, the larger the number of tests the laboratory is required to process, the cheaper the cost of the test for the testing company, and this is reflected in reduced prices for the client. In addition, the larger the number of competitors in a market, the cheaper the cost of a DNA test will tend to be.
Type of DNA test and sample used
Nowadays many testing companies offer a number of different DNA tests, with varying costs according to the type of test. This is due to the fact that different types of tests will involve varying degrees of complexity in their analysis and in the cost of the technology required to carry them out. The cheapest kind of test is usually the straightforward paternity home DNA test, other tests such as the siblings test and the grandparents test will tend to be more expensive, as they require more advanced and complex techniques in order to obtain results. Additionally the cost of the test will also depend on the kind of sample used, standard saliva samples tend to be the cheapest, whilst other types of samples such as hair, teeth and stained items of clothing will be more expensive due to the fact that it is more difficult and time-consuming to extract DNA from them.
Legal DNA test versus standard DNA test
If your DNA test needs to be used for legal purposes, certain procedures need to be followed in order to ensure that chain of custody is maintained, thus adding to the cost of the test. In chain of custody procedures, the sample will need to be collected by a third party who assumes the responsibility of verifying the identity of the persons being tested, and ensuring that the samples are not in any way tampered with. This may include costs such as clinic fees, legal fees and paying for courier delivery.
As one can see the cost of a DNA test will depend on a variety of factors, therefore it is always recommended to ask for an estimate of the price before ordering your test.
If you want to discuss any of your DNA Testing requirements we recommend that you contact homeDNAdirect to discuss your case