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What is DNA?

DNA stands for Deoxyribonucleic Acid. One way to think about DNA is that it is the blue-print for life. The DNA that is present in the vast majority of cells in a person’s body determines what eye color and hair color that the person will have, how tall the person will be and to some extent the person’s temperament, as just a few examples. Just like when you are building a house, you would have a blue-print to tell you how large the living room will be, for example. Our cells also have a blue-print, which is the DNA that gives each individual person their unique traits (barring identical twins).

  1. 1

    Inventory SAK contents

    Determine what items of evidence are included in the SAK.

  2. 2

    Y-screening

    Sample up to 10 items (swabs or underwear) to determine if male DNA is present.

  3. 3

    Sampling

    Cut up to 3 Y-screen (male DNA) positive and 1 survivor’s known samples to process.

  4. 4

    Extraction

    Separates the DNA contained in the nucleus of cells.

  5. 5

    Quantitation

    Determines how much 1) human and 2) male DNA is present in the sample.

  6. 6

    Amplification

    Process that makes millions of copies of the DNA, like a molecular photocopier.

  7. 7

    Electrophoresis

    Process that separates the amplified DNA fragments based upon their size.

  8. 8

    Data Analysis

    Generate DNA profiles from the electrophoresis data.

  9. 9

    Conclusions

    Write a draft report with DNA findings (matches / exclusions / no results).

  10. 10

    Technical Review

    All DNA reports and data must be reviewed by another qualified analyst.

  11. 11

    Reporting

    Issue a final report.

  12. 12

    CODIS

    Eligible profiles are entered into the CODIS (Combined DNA Index System) database.

  13. 13

    Hit Reports

    Generate a CODIS hit report if there is a match in the database.

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