Printable Version

DNA Laboratory Services

Pacific Northwest Blood Services Region

Parentage Testing Laboratory

The American Red Cross has been providing genetic identity testing for more than 25 years through the Pacific Northwest Blood Services Region's laboratories located in Portland, Oregon.

The laboratory provides genetic testing for hospitals, physicians, child support agencies, police departments, immigration services, private parties and individuals.

Our DNA laboratory utilizes state-of-the-art DNA technology and testing is performed by certified professionals, following accepted standards, and is admissible in US courts. Our laboratory specialists ensure that each case and client receives the utmost care and attention.

Our staff is available to provide support to clients through every step of the testing process.

Please see the sections below for more information.

How To Order

Please call the American Red Cross Parentage Testing Laboratory toll-free at 1-800-922-3998 for a free consultation, or to schedule an appointment. Contact our laboratory with questions via e-mail: paternity@redcross.org

Our laboratory specialists are available to schedule a DNA sample collection appointment or answer questions.

American Red Cross Parentage Testing Laboratory
3131 N. Vancouver Avenue, Portland, OR 97227

Collection by appointment only
Monday - Friday
8:00AM - 5:30PM
1-800-922-3998 or 1-503-528-5405

For your convenience our laboratory can also send a collection kit free of charge to your local clinic or physician. Please call 1-800-922-3998 for assistance locating a collection site.

Immigration Cases

Please download, print, and complete an Immigration Case Form (PDF) to begin the process.
This form should be faxed or e-mailed to our laboratory.
Fax: 503-280-1483
e-mailpaternity@redcross.org

PDF files require the user to have Adobe Acrobat Reader to open. Visit www.Adobe.com to download the newest version of this free software.

Maternity/Paternity Cases

Call the American Red Cross Parentage Testing Laboratory toll-free
at 1-800-922-3998 to initiate a case.

Collection Process

We routinely use buccal swabs to obtain DNA for testing. The inside of an individual's cheek is swabbed to obtain buccal cells. This process is a painless, non-invasive collection procedure. The DNA is then extracted from these cells and used for testing. If necessary, we test blood, umbilical cord blood and other types of body tissues which might have been collected at autopsy.

At the time of collection, clients are required to provide identification and also complete a Genetic Authorization Form. A strict chain of custody for all samples is maintained in order for results to be admissible in a court of law. For this reason, we cannot accept samples which are collected by the involved parties themselves, but will assist in locating a reliable collection site.

Contact our Laboratory at 1-800-922-3998, 1-503-528-5405, or paternity@redcross.org for a free consultation, or to schedule an appointment.

Testing Process

For a paternity case, we normally test the mother, child and alleged father. Our laboratory is able to provide results with a high level of certainty even when key family members are unavailable . In cases where one of the parents is deceased or physically unavailable, the analysis may still be performed by testing the parents of the missing individual.

Our laboratory specialists have extensive experience in the utilization and application of STR testing and are always available to answer questions

Short tandem repeats (STR), are short sequences of DNA that are repeated. Most of our DNA is identical to DNA of others. However, there are inherited regions of DNA that vary in each individual. Variations in DNA sequence between individuals are called "polymorphisms". The polymorphisms in STRs are due to the different number of copies of the repeat DNA that occur. By analyzing the polymorphic region of a child's DNA, we can establish which alleles were inherited from both their mother and father. STR analysis provides a basis to either exclude a tested man with 100% certainty or to include a tested man with 99% or greater certainty in a paternity case.

Results

The final reports will be provided via fax or mail, to all adults and/or their representatives in a case. To ensure confidentiality, no results or details of any case will be discussed with any persons who are unable to provide suitable proof of their identities. Genetic reports are legal documents, and are admissible in the court of law. Our Staff are available for confidential interpretation of test results. Our laboratory experts have provided testimony in the court of law, and are available as expert witnesses upon request. Reports will be processed 2 to 3 weeks from the date we receive all samples involved in the case.

Accreditation

Our Parentage Testing Laboratory is fully certified by the AABB (www.aabb.org) for genetic testing. The Parentage Testing Lab is approved by the state of Oregon as a vendor for parentage testing, and is also approved by the United States Embassy to perform relationship testing on separated family members. All of our technologists are board-certified, experienced professionals, trained to accommodate a wide range of clientele.