We’re all where we come from. We all have our roots - John Guare
We all want to know where we come from. We all have an overwhelming need to belong to something bigger than ourselves and an innate desire to understand who we are and who we could be.
The stories that are passed down from one generation to the next tell us all about the human dramas and the social, economic, and personal history of our familial legacies, but they can’t tell us who our ancestors where.
Those tales can tell us what they experienced and endured, and the contributing factors that helped to shape their personalities, but they can’t tell us who our forebears were.
And if we don’t know who our forebears were, we can never really know who we are and who we are destined to become. We can’t prepare for the future if we don’t know and understand our past.
In order to access that information, we have to take a deep dive into our genetic history and examine the secrets it contains and what the puzzle of who really are can reveal about our past and present and all of the days that lie in front of us.
Our DNA is who we are, and if we want to know, and understand where we came from and who we’re ultimately destined to be, it can, and will, in most cases, freely and readily answer those questions for us. Getting a DNA test to find the answers to those questions, is easier than it’s ever been.
With a number of different companies offering the service, we thought it was about time that we took an in-depth look at one of the more auspicious among them, EasyDNA, and the means they use to provide the solutions to any, and all, the questions about who you really are that you may have.
Who Are Easy DNA?
Any company that pushes it’s prospective clientele to find out as much about them as they possibly can immediately tick a number of positive boxes in our book.
It shows that they have very little, if anything to hide, which is a positive boon when it comes to sharing something as potentially life-changing and sensitive as your DNA with a company. Never the less, this is how EasyDNA greets all of their potential customers, which immediately put us at ease.
They’re also keen to stress the level of experience that they as a company, and their employees, have in their chosen, specialist field. With eighteen years of valuable know-how and understanding, EasyDNA have an operating platform that includes offices and agents in around twenty-five countries.
They’re a little vague about what an “agent” is, but as they offer, broadly speaking, the same service in all the territories they’re based in, it’s reasonably safe to assume that every employee, including their agents, is fully accredited and ready to operate according to the standards, and with the level of diligence and sensitivity, that EasyDNA promises that they will.
Speaking of accreditation, EasyDNA are also incredibly keen to stress that their quality assurance is measured and maintained by something they call ISO17024 guidelines, which they don’t actually explain unless you search their FAQ’s. So, to save you a little time, we thought that we’d find out what said guidelines referred to and how they impact the service that EasyDNA offers.
What Are The ISO17025 Guidelines?
ISO 17025 is an international standard that governs the testing and calibration of laboratories.
It ensures that the company running the laboratories is technically competent and capable of providing the service and testing that they advertise and that they have a quality management system in place to ensure that they do.
The standard conforms to five clauses that you can find out more about here. Knowing that EasyDNA was, and is, fully compliant with these regulations is both reassuring and guarantees a professional standard that they’re happy to talk, and tell their clientele, about.
Innovation And Compassion: The EasyDNA Way
As a company, they also emphasise the importance of the relationship that they have, and hope to build, with their customers, and go to great lengths to explain that they have an on-hand customer service team that exists to guide and help their customers through an often difficult, and stressful process.
The testimonials that their previous users have supplied seem to roughly match other online reviews, so again, they’re not trying to cover up any negative experiences their clientele may have had and are content to let the service that they provide speak for itself.
They’re also incredibly proud of the fact that they prize and value innovation and continually update their methodology and approach and strive to incorporate the latest breakthroughs and technology into every aspect of their business.
As they offer a cutting edge service that’s entirely dependent on scientific technique and procedures, it’s also reassuring to know that Easy DNA are anxious to utilize any and all advances in the field of genetics that they can in order to improve what they do.
EasyDNA DNA Tests
While they offer a wide variety of different genetic and DNA tests, the core structure of their business and the main body of the service they provide is broken down into seven groups, all of which are then subdivided according to specific areas of interest.
Broadly speaking, the tests that EasyDNA offer are as follows -
Mainly used to establish the veracity of the biological relationship between a father and offspring, EasyDNA highlights the fact that the tests they offer are irrefutably conclusive and prove parentage (boasting one hundred percent exclusion and ninety-nine point nine percent inclusion) beyond any shadow of medical doubt.
While some of the language that they use to advertise this particular service is a little sensationalist, it does provide absolute proof of parentage and includes a number of other tests that can establish familial and individual immigration eligibility and legal parental responsibility.
A relatively new field of testing, the primary reason for undertaking a relationship test is to disprove or prove, any family biological connections that might exist between two or more people and the nature of their relationship.
More complicated than standard parental DNA tests, it’s also more expensive, but can be used to determine the type of relationship that exists between individuals and isn’t, in some cases, reliant on both parties being present or granting permission for the test to be undertaken.
Carried out during pregnancy, prenatal testing is done to primarily establish parentage and identify any genetic markers that could have a detrimental effect on the development of the fetus and any possible life-altering or shortening conditions.
EasyDNA also offers a gender testing service that can be used to determine the sex of an unborn baby that, due to being exploited by certain cultures, is often frowned upon. Prices are, as usual, dependent on the complexity of the chosen test.
The most common and widely used genetic test, the idea that we could, and can, trace our ancestry and definitively find out where we came from and identify our heritage originally highlighted and brought DNA testing into the sphere of mainstream consciousness.
EasyDNA also offers paternal and maternal lineage trackers that can help you to trace your family and can firmly establish where your familial line began.
Mainly used to predict, and confirm, lactose and gluten intolerances (that usually manifests as celiac disease), EasyDNA also offers a far more comprehensive, and complex, genetic test that can be used to identify possible susceptibility to potentially life-altering and shortening diseases and genetic conditions.
The idea is simple - if you know that you’re at risk of falling victim to an inherited condition or are susceptible to illness, you can ward it off at the pass and seek treatment before the symptoms begin to appear.
It’s a frightening prospect, but one that EasyDNA have a good track record of successfully guiding and helping people through.
If it’s something that’s been playing on your mind or eating away at you for a while, it’s a good idea to get tested, and given the way they handle and deal with this particular test, EasyDNA should be high on your list of potential testing companies.
The all-one genetic MOT that can help identify any immediate problems, it’s also an easy allergy test that can readily identify common problems such as sensitivity to cats and dogs, common and uncommon food groups as well as potentially life-threatening vulnerabilities like peanut allergies.
Sometimes it’s better to be forewarned, so you can be forewarned and tackle any potential allergies before they reveal themselves without having to join an interminable, and seemingly never-ending waiting list.
And given how affordable EasyDNA make it, we wholeheartedly believe that its an option that everyone should consider.
They also provide an inexpensive, simple, and straightforward drug testing service that uses hair samples to identify any narcotic and chemical misuse and dependency issues.
While drug testing is mainly used by companies to identify problems among their staff and employees, the service that EasyDNA provides is fully confidential and could be used to identify specific problems that your family members and friends have fallen prey to.
How Does It Work? How Do EasyDNA Do What They Do?
All of the DNA tests that EasyDNA undertake are performed in sterile laboratory conditions, but they’re reliant on you mailing the samples that you want to be tested into them.
It might seem a little disconcerting at first, sending your samples through the post but Easy DNA provide a discreet DNA collection kit that they’ll send straight out to you as soon as you order by telephone or through their user-friendly website.
While the kit itself is incredibly straight forward and easy to use, some of EasyDNA’s customers have expressed concerns about the terms and conditions that arrive with the kit.
They are expansive, to say the least, and the sheer volume of information that said terms and conditions contain, and which all of their clientele are expected to abide by, can be intimidating and more than a little off-putting.
EasyDNA, who are aware of the nature of their terms and conditions and the way that some of their customers have reacted to them, maintain that they are legally necessary due to the nature of the contract that exists between them and their clients and the potential legal landmine that both parties could become ensnared in.
Even though the prospect of having to agree to the depth and complexity of legal language that the terms and conditions are wrapped up does seem unnecessary and overly protective of the company rather than the client, they’re not designed to inconvenience either EasyDNA or you, but instead have been put in place to protect both you and the company.
In other words, don’t worry, EasyDNA aren’t trying to bamboozle, fool or distract you and there’s nothing in the terms and conditions that’ll return to haunt, or hurt, you at some unspecified point in the future.
Once you’ve agreed to, and accepted their terms and conditions, and have followed the instructions and prepared your DNA sample, you simply pop it in one of the provided containers (usually a colour coded envelope that you’ll have to write you name and relevant personal details on), return it to EasyDNA and they’ll do the rest.
The Power Plex 16 DNA Testing System
EasyDNA uses the Power Plex 16 system, that was developed, and patented, by leading biomedical brand Promega and is licensed to EasyDNA for all aspects of human, and animal, DNA testing.
Based around, and built on, identifying STR polymorphisms, it uses said STR’s, which are a series of genetic markers, to analyze and classify DNA. As soon as EasyDNA receive your sample, they’ll use Power Plex 16 to test, and record, and find out everything they can about your DNA.
It’s a fast, accurate, and irrefutable test that hasn’t, providing it has enough material to test, failed yet.
How Long Does It Take To Get My Results Back?
The EasyDNA website states that you should have your results, depending on the type of test that you ordered, within three to five days of them receiving your sample.
In reality though, and according to most customers, you should add a couple of days to the number. Just to be on the safe side and reduce your expectations and keep them in check.
When you do get your results, you should receive them by post and email (in the form of a PDF) that provides a clear and concise breakdown of the test(s) carried out and what they mean to, and for, you. EasyDNA keeps the results simple so that you can easily understand them.
The whole process, from initial order to the time you receive your results, shouldn’t take more than two weeks.
What Happens To My Samples After They’ve Been Tested?
Any and all samples that EasyDNA receives are stored for six months after testing, at which point you can either request that they keep them on file and store them for a further six months, they’ll automatically dispose of them.
It’s all there in black and white in the hideously complex terms and conditions that they’ll send you. EasyDNA don’t expect you to agree to anything that they’re not willing to abide by themselves.
And In Conclusion...
While they don’t rely on the same sort of advertising that a lot of other DNA testing firms use, EasyDNA prefer to let their track record and work speak for itself.
Affordable, accurate, quick, and easy to use, they’re a one-stop testing company that, for a surprisingly small fee, will tell you more about yourself than you ever wanted to know.
A Quick Science Lesson - What Is DNA?
DNA is, in layman’s terms, the building blocks of life. It’s a double helix molecule that contains all of the genetic information that makes you, well you.
Every living thing on Earth, from the simplest virus to the blue whale, from humans to the duck-billed platypus have one thing in common. They’re, and we’re, all made of these tiny, wonderful building blocks.
It determines everything about you, from your eye colour to your favourite cereal, to your penchant for adventure and the way you feel when you see a sunrise. And with a simple test, everything that you were, are, and will be can be measured, observed, and quantified.
And While We’re On The Subject, What Is DNA Testing?
DNA testing, or as it’s more commonly known in scientific circles is a process used to identify and measure changes in chromosomal structure and DNA sequencing.
Medically, it’s often used to diagnose specific genetic conditions and disorders and formulate individual treatment regimes for patients where, and when other more generalised treatments have failed.
It can also be used to identify and pinpoint allergies before they manifest themselves and formulate prevention regimes that could potentially save an individual from succumbing to the debilitating effects of allergic reactions and anaphylactic shock.
On a more personal level, DNA testing can also be used to ascertain parentage, trace, and reunite biological relatives and determine an individual’s ancestry and place of origin. Science really is wonderful, isn’t it?