HomeDNA Review - UPDATED Feb 2018
HomeDNA is a brand owned by DNA Diagnostics Center Inc. (DDC), a company with more than 20 years of experience in the field with over 2 million executed DNA tests. DDC incorporates several renowned brands, including GPS Origins, DDC Paternity Test, HomeDNA, and Wisdom Panel. It offers a wide range of DNA testing solutions for ancestry, biological relationships, forensic research, health & beauty, and pets.
The conglomerate is also well-known for its hi-tech approach to DNA testing and sequencing facilities equipped with robotics technology. The father company was founded in 1995, aiming to incorporate the latest scientific breakthroughs into widely available and affordable DNA testing options. All DNA tests offered by the company are developed by experienced professionals in their respective fields and we’ll elaborate further on every single one in this dedicated HomeDNA review.
How HomeDNA Works
HomeDNA follows the well-known direct-to-customer approach and all of its tests encompass the following steps:
- Placing an order – You can view the complete offer on the HomeDNA website and place your order there. Some of the tests are also available in select retail stores worldwide. You can utilize the “Find a Store” feature on the Overview page of every test to easily locate a store near you.
- Sample collection – Once your personal DNA testing kit arrives at your address, you’ll be able to collect your DNA sample for further processing. HomeDNA tests usually require a cheek swab, which is a quick and entirely painless procedure.
- Kit registration – Make sure to register your kit before sending it back to HomeDNA. Once you enter the register window, you’ll be asked whether you or somebody else is doing the test. After answering the question, you’ll be prompted to enter your unique kit barcode. You can find the barcode printed on the back of the DNA sample envelope.
- Sending the kit back – With sample collection and kit registration out of the way, you can mail your sample back to the DDC lab for sequencing. The tests come with a pre-paid mailer, so you won’t have to worry about any additional costs.
- Inspecting the results – For most of the tests, you’ll receive a confirmation email once your sample is ready for processing. After the testing phase, your final report will be uploaded to your personal account and ready for inspection. The average turnaround time depends on the test in question. You can find the turnaround times for each test in the Tests section of our HomeDNA review.
As always, we recommend not eating, drinking anything but water, smoking, brushing your teeth or chewing a bubble gum at least half an hour (ideally, 2 hours) before swabbing your inner cheeks for buccal cells. With animal DNA tests, you also shouldn’t feed the tested animal half an hour before collecting the sample.
Why Choose HomeDNA
Here are some indicators of the service quality offered by HomeDNA:
- Developed under the largest company in the field
- Numerous DNA testing solutions
- Highly experienced team
- One of the most accredited and modern laboratories in the world
- Accurate results with zero possibility of errors
- Quick turnaround times
- Comprehensive and detailed reports
- Raw data upload
- Affordable prices
- Competent user support
- Extensive knowledge base
The DNA tests offered by HomeDNA are segmented into 3 categories, so we’ll go over each one and elaborate on the specific options.
This category allows you to uncover your biological lineage and pinpoint the “movement” of your DNA strain throughout history. It contains the following options:
- GPS Origins Algorithm (79.00$) – This option allows you to upload your raw data from previous DNA tests taken with Family Tree DNA, Ancestry, 23andMe, and National Geographic. Your raw data will be used as a DNA sample for the GPS Origins test.
- GPS Origins Ancestry Test (199.00$) – Launched in 2016, this test offers the latest methodology and technology for determining the history of your family. GPS Origins utilizes a new ancestral tracking technique and analyzes 800,000 genetic markers, 862 reference populations, and 36 gene pools. It’s the only test with biogeographical targeting to the specific village or town, identifying the origination point of the DNA signature that leads to you. It also follows migration patterns throughout history, allowing you to see the movement of your ancestors over time. Your final report will include an interactive map, a comprehensive gene pool profile with appropriate DNA percentages, and a detailed overview of the migrations of your paternal and maternal DNA lineages. The average turnaround time for this test is between 2 and 3 weeks.
- HomeDNA Starter Ancestry Test (69.00$) – This test allows you to locate the origins of your ancestral DNA and discover the population groups you have most in common with. The test will also show you which of the modern populations resembles your DNA the most. Starter Ancestry Test checks 100 genetic markers and provides results in around 3 weeks.
- HomeDNA Healthy Weight (119.00$) – This revolutionary test analyzes genetic markers that influence your weight and provides you with a fully customized plan for a healthier diet and exercise regimen. The final report will include personal recommendations regarding the food you should eat, nutrient needs based on your genetic signature, ideal exercises for achieving and maintaining your healthiest weight, and a list of recipes tailored to your body. The results are uploaded to your account within 3 weeks after receiving your sample.
- HomeDNA Paternity (144.00$) – This test, formerly known as IDENTIGENE, is one of the most trusted paternity DNA tests in America. The final report is strictly confidential and can be uploaded to your account or delivered by mail in just one day. HomeDNA also offers the possibility of paternity DNA testing for legal purposes.
- HomeDNA Skin Care (99.00$) – The test analyzes SNPs related to the overall performance of your skin. It’ll allow you to take the guesswork out of purchasing skin care products by providing a deeper understanding of your genetic profile. You’ll also receive results regarding collagen quality, fine lines and wrinkles, skin elasticity, pigmentation, sun protection, skin sensitivity, and antioxidants, alongside personal recommendations for topical ingredients, professional treatments, and supplement ingredients. The results usually arrive within 3 weeks.
- Joint Care DNA Test (49.00$) – The test checks genetic markers in charge of collagen production and its overall quality. The final report arrives within 3-4 weeks and it includes the assessment of your joint health, recommendations for your diet/exercise routine, and potential improvements on your lifestyle. It is recommended that you share the results with your physician.
This category is completely dedicated to dog DNA testing and it offers the following solutions:
- Canine Health Check (129.00$) – As it name implies, the test screens your dog(s) for more than 150 genetic diseases and traits. The final report provides you with a full genetic health appearance profile, alongside a comprehensive explanation of the results. You’ll be able to better understand the genetic health of your dog and provide early interventions since you’ll know the potential risks. You can also share the results with your vet in order to provide the best care for your dog. The results are back within 7-10 work days.
- Wisdom Panel 3.0 Dog Breed Identification Test (79.00$) – Wisdom Panel provides you with detailed info regarding your dog’s ancestry, accounting for all breeds in the direct paternal and maternal lineages going back three generations. It’ll also teach you everything about expected genetic behavior and wellness needs. The test covers more than 250 breeds and can be performed at any age. You’ll also receive a certificate of canine breed analysis. The average turnaround time is between 2 and 3 weeks.
Privacy And Security
- Never disclose any information regarding your case or personal data without your explicit permission;
- Always follow your instructions about communication with other parties regarding your tests;
- Never release any confidential information including the test results over the phone.
Shipping And Handling
HomeDNA will ship your DNA testing kit within 1 business day of receiving your order. They use USPS, which comes with free shipping for both domestic and overseas customers. Domestic deliveries take between 7 and 10 business days while shipments sent overseas arrive within 3 weeks. If you so choose, you can upgrade your shipping for faster delivery. Note that 1-day or 2-day delivery is only available to domestic customers. You can also order a hard copy of your Home Paternity Test results for an additional fee.