The Division of Human Genetics offers a DNA extraction service to academic institutions in the Western Cape.

We are dedicated to provide this non-profit service in a timely and quality assured fashion


The service offers the extraction of DNA from whole blood, buffy coat or saliva; and the preparation and long-term storage of buffy coats.

It is the responsibility of the researcher to ensure that biological materials are obtained ethically and that proper consent was obtained. The researcher should be able to produce a copy of the ethics letter before transporting samples to the lab.

a. Transport/ collection

For the isolation of DNA from whole blood, refrigerated samples should be sent to the laboratory in 5ml EDTA (“purple top”) tubes within 48 hours of being collected. Buffy coats should be transported frozen in either 1.5 or 2ml safelock Eppendorf tubes. Saliva samples collected in Oragene or Norgene kits should be transported to the laboratory at ambient temperature.

Please contact the DNA isolation laboratory (number below) for advice/ assistance on methods for transport and collection of specific sample types.

b. DNA extraction and turn-around time

DNA extraction from blood is done the using the salting out method. Extraction from saliva is done following the manufacturer’s instructions. DNA is eluted in TE buffer into nuclease-free Eppendorf tubes. The turn-around time is five working days from the day samples were delivered in to the laboratory.

c. Quantification

All DNA samples are quantified on the NanoDrop ND-1000.

d. Quality Control

Depending on the specific requirements for the sample, quality control can be performed to test the DNA integrity and/ or quality.

e. Cost per sample

DNA extraction from whole blood, buffy-coat or saliva: R300.00

f. DNA banking

Samples are stored in a temperature-monitored and secure facility at -20°C (medium term) and -80°C (long-term).


FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: DNA isolation laboratory – Miss Lerato Majara (021 406 6501)