When a person hears about the DNA test, the first thing that comes to their mind might be a crime story or show that they watch. Hair is mostly gathered at many crime scenes, just like in TV shows, but nowadays, it is considered unreliable and rarely used as forensic evidence. The FBI even admitted that testimony based on hair analysis has been incorrect in at least 90% of cases. Moreover, ancestry DNA test centers using hair DNA testing can also create unreliable test results. Other than gathering DNA sample for relation or paternity testing, there are also face recognition app that uses pictures to determine whether you are relative or not. However, these kinds of things are not very reliable, but still, people use them for fun purposes. In simple words, facial hair can be utilized as a DNA sample for genetic testing, but they don’t provide reliable results.
Can the hair be used in a legal scenario?
Hair evaluation techniques can be used to determine if two people are related to each other or not. DNA from cells adhering to the roots of the hair and hair structure is utilized in hair testing so that the culprit can be identified. Hair samples are evaluated under the microscope after being evaluated with specific substances. Hair evaluations can also be performed to check for metal toxicity like mercury or lead poisoning. However, it is not used that much for this type of testing; moreover, if the sample’s validity has not gone through the correct sequence of protocols, so the hair sample and its findings are not accepted in the court.
How does it work?
Hair is a protein that develops from the skin’s hair follicles. A hair nourishes in the hair follicles for many months before stopping and falling out. Afterward, new hair starts to grow. As the hair grows slowly, it takes quite some for a hair sample to identify the changes in the body. Additionally, the recent changes, like drug usage in the past few days, are not identifiable in hair samples. On the other hand, a hair analysis can be used to reveal drug usage or chemical usage in the previous months.
The problem that occurs while using hair for DNA testing:
- The Hair follicle is the element that is required for DNA testing. Additionally, it is also the component that has less chance to be present in the preserved strand of hair. as a result performing ancestry testing using hair can be a problem.
- The age of a sample is equal to the sample’s age. Similarly, samples from a wooly mammoth that are a little older than the sample from anyone’s great-great-grandmother can be evaluated successfully. Additionally, these hair strands can be evaluated as well. However, you should also note that scientists have examined those samples, and you might not be able to afford that kind of forensic testing.
- Another issue resides in finding the location of a lab, which is very difficult in comparison to getting a DNA test or using a face recognition app from Choice DNA. Hair testing is not usually provided by many genetic testing service providers.
Real-life applications of hair DNA testing:
On average, humans shed almost 100 head hairs per day. Afterward, human hair can easily breakdowns during physical contact. Hence, they are usually submitted as forensic evidence to find links between people. These kinds of evidence are used during violent crimes as there are possibilities of physical contact, like aggravated assault, homicide, and sexual assault. Crimes like armed robbery have fewer chances of physical contact, so pieces of clothing or other kinds of items can be used as evidence.
The National Academy of Science 2009 released a report called “Strengthening the Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward” that stated which hair should be tested and whether hairs share similar characteristics. However, they should not be considered an authentic mechanism for identifying the suspects.
As many people have become interested in learning more about their DNA through Ancestry testing, relationship, or paternity testing. Most of these tests generate accurate results that are more accurate and reliable than hair testing. If you want to have the best DNA test result, you can visit our ancestry DNA test centers or get a DNA kit. Moreover, you can also use our face recognition app.