Root DNA Identification Service
 

This service is especially useful in those cases where one or more trees could be responsible for causing building subsidence or damage to drains where the roots cannot be distinguished by their morphology.

For more information see our FAQ section

Using traditional techniques (looking at the root structure using a light microscope) it is not possible to discriminate roots of trees of the same species, therefore, a large proportion of the subsidence cases cannot be solved with traditional means.  However, Bioprofiles' DNA technique enables root identification even when several individuals of the same species or similar species are involved e.g. a willow and a poplar, or two maple species.

The UK insurance industry receives some 40,000 subsidence cases per year, 75% of which are caused by trees or shrubs. This amounts to around 300 million in claims related to property subsidence (Association of British Insurers Report, 1999). This may increase to over 500 million following severe summer droughts

DNA based methods, sequencing and DNA fingerprinting, will speed up claim processes and court cases and therewith decrease litigation costs for the insurance industry. For homeowners it means that an un-saleable house may become marketable again.  Our direct clients are, for example, arboricultural consultants working for a loss adjuster or an insurance company. However, also lawyers, councils, and private house and tree owners benefit from a fast solution

Bioprofiles will deliver this service objectively and therefore it will not be involved in the collection of samples in-situ, nor will we give advice on management practices of the tree e.g. pruning or removal of the tree.

Bioprofiles simply provides an identification in the form of a report based on the samples supplied to us.

If you wish to use this service this is what you should do:

1. Ring us and discuss the problem
2. Post the samples to us (see guidelines)
3. Receive the report in 7-12 working days

Case Study:

Results from a case (see image) where three individual oak trees were found around a building with subsidence in Essex. DNA analysis showed that the Tree 1 had identical fingerprints to Root 1, a Tree 2 was identical to another root, Root 2, and no roots were identical to tree 3. The two colours (black and blue) represent two different microsatellite loci.

 

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