How to Collect DNA Samples

Updated: Aug 6, 2020


GeneSeek, the company doing the initial DNA analysis for USYAKS will accept properly collected yak DNA  in four sample types: two different hair sample methods, blood and tissue. The choice is yours. Ordering materials and equipment to take the samples depending on which method is selected and their associated costs are the responsibility of the yak owner. The following provided the basic information needed for each form of collection. Method 1: Hair sent in an envelope  –  This method provides usable DNA providing the individual collecting the DNA is careful to follow the directions. Contamination and insufficient amounts of DNA are the reasons for failure. The following directions should help you to successfully collect a hair sample.

  1. Wash your hands.

  2. Clean the area removing any loose hair, dirt or manure.

  3. Pull (DO NOT CUT) 60 or more hair strands at the base (root) of the tail. Pliers can be used. Grasp a 4. Examine the hair for the presence of root bulbs. This is where the DNA used in the test is located. If most of the pulled hair lack root bulbs, discard the hair sample and try again. Your goal is to have 60 hairs with root bulbs present.

  4. Do not trim the hair. Keep root bulbs aligned. You may tape the sample to an index card if you are careful to not touch the root bulbs or tape them. Do not touch the root ends of the hair sample; you will contaminate it with your own DNA

  5. Hair samples must be placed in a paper envelope. Do not use a plastic bag as the sample must be able to breathe.

  6. Before placing your hair sample in the envelope, write the following on the outside

  • Farm Prefix: __________