Do I need to know exactly how many samples I will be submitting ahead of time?
No, but a close estimate is helpful so that we can send you approximately the right number of vials.
Can I send you samples in other containers such as plastic bags?
In order to reduce the amount of cross-contamination and minimize sample mix-ups, using our supplied vials is best.
How big are your vials? Is that enough sample?
We send 20 mL scintillation vials. If you fill these half-way with sample, that will be more than enough sample.
What if I am sending swabs and they don’t fit?
Should I write more information on the vial?
As long as our label and barcode are not impacted, you can add more labels or writing. If you fill out the datasheets correctly, we won’t need it.
Are those labels safe for the fridge or freezer?
The labels are good down to -40°C.
Should I homogenize fecal samples?
DNA is pretty well evenly distributed in fecal samples. If multiple samples are being combined, these should be homogenized as much as possible to ensure representativity.
Should I run replicates?
Scientifically, our general rule of thumb is to maximize statistical power. That means run as many independent samples as possible. Once the number of independent samples is maximized, it then makes sense to begin to replicate. How many replicates will be is hard to say. Every case is unique.
Should I keep duplicates?
We will archive samples for a minimum of 3 years. Samples are minimally handled and our techniques minimize the likelihood loss or contamination. Still, it never hurts to have redundancy.
What if I cannot freeze the samples in the field? How do I preserve them?
Either dry them by adding silica gel to the vial, or preserve them with an ethanol solution. We can also recover DNA from air-dried samples.
Where should I send samples?
Make sure to have tracking information.
Boulder, CO 80301