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DNA Lifeprint testing?(15 posts)

DNA Lifeprint testing?ColnagoFE
Jan 6, 2004 2:29 PM
My sister just sent me something about this DNA Lifeprint testing kit that you are supposed to collect your child's DNA in and then send to this company for databasing in the event of an abduction or other various nasty scenarios. While it seems like a good idea on the surface, my gut tells me this is a privacy-lovers nightmare with a huge abuse potential. ANyone have the inside scoop on this company or commments on this kind of thing? I did a google search but didn't find out too much other than that they have sent out a lot of internet spam. Said to be endorsed by John Walsh, but that seems questionable as well.
What's the point?TJeanloz
Jan 6, 2004 2:32 PM
Assuming they're your natural children, DNA samples from both parents can provide a pretty accurate (something like 99.999%) match with any sample they might find.

Maybe if you kid was adopted.
Comment from a privacy-lover.czardonic
Jan 6, 2004 2:34 PM
How likely is it that you will not be able to supply a DNA sample from household or personal items should the need arise?

So who is the data going to be most useful too? Seems to me, the kind of people who have no business with it.
that was my first thoughtColnagoFE
Jan 6, 2004 2:55 PM
That something is fishy here. Playing off fears of child abduction and such they gain this data and then use it for making $ somehow. I suppose a good idea would be to take the collection kit (which is supposed to remain viable for something like 80 years) and then store the vials in a safe or safe deposit box yourself. That would take away a lot of my privacy concerns.
ever see the movie "Gattaca"? nmDougSloan
Jan 6, 2004 3:05 PM would probably make me even more paranoid (nm)ColnagoFE
Jan 6, 2004 3:14 PM
good movie, in any event nmDougSloan
Jan 6, 2004 3:20 PM
I did it with my child.Scot_Gore
Jan 6, 2004 3:32 PM
The DNA dosn't go to anyone, you keep it at home, just in case. They took a sample and provided "care" instructions and I think it's got an expected life of 7 years or so.

But, it didn't go to a database, it went into a cabinet in my house. No ones got it or knows about it except Mom and Dad. FYI: I used the program with John Walsh's name all over it.

I would think the steps involved in processing, analyizing, and cataloging a tissue sample to be available in some kind of database would be very expensive for something that would be unused in 99.99999% of cases. Mine was free.

What made me the most quesey was the thought of what would make me pull it out of the cabinet again.

And yes TJ, I have an adopted child.

Wouldn't a lock of hair do the trick just as well? (nm)TJeanloz
Jan 6, 2004 3:39 PM
The Literature SaidScot_Gore
Jan 6, 2004 3:46 PM
The sample would be lab ready and known to belong to the child and only the child. Tissue samples from around the house might be your own, the neighbors kid, or whatever.
Wouldn't a lock of hair do the trick just as well? (nm)Woof the dog
Jan 6, 2004 11:57 PM
The DNA they amplify comes from the cells in the hair follicle that is usually left over on the hair if you pull it out. The hair itself does not contain DNA, because it is just a filamentous outgrowth (I think, though not sure but should really know this stuff by now).

Hair contains no DNATri_Rich
Jan 7, 2004 7:05 AM
Cells attached to hair do. Hair itself is purly protein.
fingernails? teeth? nmDougSloan
Jan 7, 2004 7:31 AM
I think the concern with tissue samples collected at homeScot_Gore
Jan 7, 2004 8:29 AM
is contamination. My daughter lost a tooth last night, but as far as I know my cat is using it a chew toy as I sit here and post today.
Ever had a root canal?Tri_Rich
Jan 7, 2004 8:32 AM
There are live cells, I believe, in teeth (hence the pain from cavities and dental work). Fingernails may contain some remnants of dead skin cells I really don't know. DNA from teeth has been used in some forensic investigations (this is getting a little far away from the biology I have worked in)