Forensic Biology FAQs
Why perform testing at HSA?
The DNA Profiling Lab is internationally accredited by the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors/Laboratory Accreditation Board (ASCLD/LAB).
Who can submit items for testing?
Cases for criminal forensic DNA profiling must be submitted by a law enforcement agency. For advice on the suitability of the items to be tested, collection, storage, and packaging of the items, please contact the DNA Profiling Laboratory (Outram) at 65-6213 0779 or DNA Profiling Laboratory (Synapse) 65-6684 1503.
Civil cases involving determination of parent-child relationship (also known as parentage testing) or individual DNA profiling may be submitted by a medical practitioner or an individual. Please contact the DNA Profiling Laboratory (Outram) at 65-6213 0779 to make an appointment for this parentage test.
Note: Sexual intercourse with a minor below 16 years of age constitutes a criminal offence (Singapore Penal Code Chapter 224 Section 376A). For such civil cases, HSA generally will not accept the parentage test request unless it is required by the Courts of Singapore or by the Singapore Immigration & Checkpoints Authority.
Will the item be damaged in the testing process?
Depending on the item and the test(s) required, portions of the item may be cut. The colour of the item may also be altered by the chemicals used in the testing.
What is the cost of DNA testing at HSA?
|DNA Test||Cost (inclusive of GST)|
|1. Standard Parentage Test (child, mother, putative father)||SGD989.75
For every additional child, there will be a charge of SGD293.20
|2. Special Parentage Test (from amniotic fluid or chorionic villus samples)||SGD1503.35|
|3. Individual DNA Profiling
How long will the examination process take?
|1. Standard Parentage Test
|2. Special Parentage Test
(amniotic fluid sample or
chorionic villus sample)
|3. Individual DNA Profiling
How is payment made?
Payment will be collected upfront, in full. Payment may be made with NETS or credit card (VISA or MASTERCARD only). Cash or cheques are not accepted.
How long will HSA keep the sample I sent ?
Any sample received by HSA will be disposed of three  months after receipt by HSA if it is not accompanied by
- the test request, or
- full payment for the test.
HSA will terminate the test report and dispose of sample(s) if
- the full payment for the test is not made within the agreed time, or
- the samples of all persons involved in the test are not received within
three  months after the first submission of the sample(s) to HSA.
Is my DNA profile unique?
Yes, barring identical twins.
How is parentage DNA testing performed?
In standard parentage testing, a small blood sample (via a finger prick) is obtained from the child, mother and putative father. Under special circumstances, testing can be performed without the mother's blood sample although this is not the recommended approach. DNA is extracted from the blood samples. Every individual receives half of their DNA from their biological father and the other half of their DNA from the biological mother. Hence, by comparing the DNA profiles of the biological mother and child, it is possible to determine which half of the child's DNA was inherited from her. The remaining half must therefore have been inherited from the child's biological father.
If the DNA profiles between the tested man and the child do NOT match, he is 100% excluded as being the biological father of the child. If the DNA profiles match, a 99.99% or greater probability of paternity can be concluded (in the absence of mutations).
For special cases involving foetuses, clients are advised to consult their gynaecologist. Amniotic fluid or chorionic villus samples (from the foetus) can be collected by the gynaecologist. The foetal samples, along with client’s blood samples taken by the clinic can be sent to our laboratory. Please inform the clinic to liaise with our laboratory. Alternatively, clients can choose to submit the foetal samples to us directly, and the blood samples obtained via a finger prick at our laboratory.
Who may authorise the blood sampling from the child (under 21 years of age)?
The legal parent or legal guardian of the child, as stated on official documents (e.g. Birth Certificate or statutory declaration), will have to be present for the appointment to give consent.
Are my results confidential?
Strict confidentiality of our clients and the results is observed. Two copies of the test report will be released only to the person paying for the test. Results will not be released over the telephone.
Do I need to make an appointment?
Yes. DNA testing is carried out strictly by appointment only. All parties involved in the testing must be present at the appointment time. Please contact DNA Profiling Laboratory (Outram) at 65-6213 0779.
What documents do I need to bring?
(i) Original or authenticated Identification documents (e.g. Passports or
(ii) Original or authenticated documents (e.g. Birth certificate or statutory
declaration) to verify legal parent / guardian of persons below 21 years
of age. Consent for the purpose of parentage testing must be given by
the legal parent / guardian.
Authentication must be made by the Embassy of the document-issuing country or a Notary Public in Singapore.
Official translations are required if documents are not in English. Translated document(s) must be provided by the government agency of document-issuing country, or attested by the Embassy of the document-issuing country or a Notary Public in Singapore.
HSA will make a photocopy of the documents for records.
How do I receive the results of my test?
The Test Report may be collected in person. Please bring your identity card and the receipt for your case. You may also designate a person to collect the report on your behalf. This designation is made when you first come for the test. Alternatively, the report can be mailed to you.
Test Reports which are uncollected three  months after issuance of the Test Report will be disposed.