Sign in →

Test Code DNA BANK DNA Banking

Clinical System Name

DNA Banking


DNA banking is a service that allows patients' genomic DNA to be stored for future diagnostic studies. DNA is extracted from the submitted sample and stored for a minimum of ten years.


A signed DNA bank consent must be submitted by the ordering provider once the patient or family has been counseled regarding the purpose and potential uses of the stored sample and he/she has had a chance to review the DNA Bank Information and Consent (DNA Bank Information and Consent - Spanish).  


Please also note that there is a fee for DNA banking which may not be covered by patient insurance. 

Sample Requirements

Specimen: Whole blood, cord blood

Container(s): Lavender/EDTA, Yellow/ACD A or B

Preferred Vol: 10 mL

Minimum Vol: 6 mL


Note: Smaller whole blood volumes may yield suboptimal amounts of DNA, but will not be rejected.  Patients' white blood count and age of the specimen will also affect DNA yield.  Whole blood samples should be received within 5 days of collection.  Acceptability of samples > 5 days will be assessed by DNA extraction lab.


Specimen: Extracted DNA

Minimum: 30µg

Note: DNA concentration minimum 50 µg/mL; 260/280 ratio 1.70-2.00


Specimen: Fresh frozen tissue

Container: Sterile cup or tube

Preferred Vol: 200-300mg

Minimum Vol: 50mg


Note: Skin punch biopsies are not acceptable for direct DNA extraction for DNA banking as they do not yield sufficient DNA to meet the minimum requirement for storage.  Skin biopsies received for DNA banking will be cultured before DNA extraction - there is an additional fee for tissue culture.


Specimen: Cultured cells

Acceptable:  Fibroblasts, amniocytes, chorionic villus sampling (CVS)

Container(s): T-25 flasks

Preferred Vol: 2 flasks


Note: Amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling (CVS) samples must be cultured by external lab. 

Future studies planned for DNA banked from prenatal samples may also require a maternal sample to rule out maternal cell contamination.   This service is not available at SCH lab, check with reference lab for specimen requirements for prenatal samples. 

Processing Instructions

Reject due to: Heparin

Spin: No

Aliquot: No


Specimen Type Description Temperature Storage instructions
Whole blood EDTA or ACD tube Refrigerate Molecular Genetics box in CPA refrigerator #2
Extracted DNA Aliquot tube of DNA Refrigerate Molecular Genetics box in CPA refrigerator #2
Cultured cells Tissue culture flask filled with tissue culture media (media has a bright pink color) Room temp M-F 9-1800 call x73872 for pick-up; after hours, weekends & holidays in CPA Cytogenetics room temp box
Fresh frozen tissue Frozen aliquot of 50-300 mg tissue Frozen M-F 9-1700 call x73872 for pick-up; after hours, weekends & holidays in CPA -70 freezer



Off-site collection: Refrigerate blood samples until ready to ship.  Transport blood, DNA & cultured cell samples at room temperature via overnight shipping.  Transport fresh frozen tissue on dry ice.


Specimen Type Temperature Time
Fresh frozen tissue Frozen  
Cultured cells Room temp 3 days
Whole blood, extracted DNA Room temp 3-5 days
Whole blood, extracted DNA Refrigerated 5 days
Extracted DNA Frozen ok


Note: Blood samples must be processed within 5 days of collection. DNA yield decreases with age of sample.  Whole blood samples > 5 days may be submitted to be assessed by our lab for acceptability for extraction, but may be rejected.


STAT Performed TAT
Contact lab Monday - Friday 2 weeks


Performing Laboratory

Seattle Children's Laboratory


Department:  Molecular Genetics Laboratory

Phone: 206-987-3872


Lab Client Services: 206-987-2617,


Lab Genetic Counselor:

Reference Range

A report verifying the concentration and volume of DNA stored will be sent to the ordering genetics clinic or provider.

CPT Codes


Special Instructions

It is the responsibility of the ordering provider or his/her designated clinical representative to review with the patient and/or family the DNA Bank Information and Consent (DNA Bank Information and Consent - Spanish).  The signed form must be sent to the Molecular Genetics Lab via fax (206-987-1465) or email (  


In cases where the consent is not received prior to reporting the stored DNA amount, the ordering provider will be notified that the DNA will not be made available for future tests until the signed consent is received by the Molecular Genetics Lab DNA Bank.


The use of DNA banking should be discussed with a genetic counselor or geneticist. They can help you decide if and when DNA banking should be considered and from whom blood samples should be obtained.


Blood samples must be processed within 5 days of collection. DNA yield decreases with age of sample.


Molecular Genetics

Clinical Utility

DNA diagnostic studies are available for a number of inherited conditions, providing families with the option of tracking the gene mutation(s) within their family or testing in future pregnancies. Despite these advances there are many genetic conditions for which DNA analysis is not currently available, but may become available in the future.


One unique aspect of DNA analysis is that sometimes DNA samples from affected family members must be compared to those from unaffected members. For some families, death of a family member with a genetic condition makes DNA analysis impossible. In order to store DNA samples from family members so that future diagnostic studies can be performed, a DNA Bank has been established at Seattle Children’s. DNA that is stored will be kept in the bank for a minimum of ten years. The DNA Bank will only store the DNA, not analyze or test it; hence results will not be available until DNA analysis is requested. Individuals wishing to store DNA must consent to donate their sample to Seattle Children’s as a restricted gift to be used for the sole purpose of genetic testing, diagnosis, and counseling of their family. The sample will not be used for research or commercial purposes unless the donor or legal representative specifically requests release for these purposes.


The use of DNA banking should be discussed with a genetic counselor or geneticist. They can help decide if and when DNA banking should be considered and from whom blood samples should be obtained.  DNA storage does not imply that a test is currently available or that a family member has decided to undergo a test.  Families should maintain close contact with their referring Genetics Clinic to keep updated regarding new developments in DNA testing.