DNA Parent Verification

The most common approach to parent verification is to take a tail hair sample and send it in a collection kit with the animal’s ear tag or ear tattoo identifier marked on the kit.  These kits may be obtained from Australian Wagyu Association (AWA) (contact the AWA).

The sample is sent to an AWA approved DNA testing laboratory which must also have the DNA test results for both the animal’s sire and dam to compare against. In Australia, the approved lab is the University of Queensland (UQ) Animal Genetics Laboratory (AGL). When an animal is tested by the lab it is provided with a Case Number for the test and the lab recognises the animal by that Case Number.

Conduct a DNA parent verification

  1. Pull a tail hair sample – about 40 hairs pulled out by the roots as the DNA will be extracted from the root follicles.
  2. Put the hair sample in the sample kit and mark the animal ear tag identifier
  3. Complete a DNA application form – download form (excel spreadsheet). Each animal is required to be tested: identifier, sire case number, dam case number, (instructions are in the spreadsheet). Please note, parents and progeny are required to be on the same platform for parent verification.
  4. Post the collection kit and printed spreadsheet to University of Queensland (UQ) Animal Genetics Laboratory (AGL)
    Email the spreadsheet to the Australian Wagyu Association to advise them of samples being sent to the lab. Email and postal address details are in the spreadsheet.
  5. The lab will conduct the parent verification and return the results to AWA with a copy sent to the submitting member.  The results will include the match or not to the sire and the dam, plus the Case Number for that particular test.
  6. AWA will invoice the member upon receipt of the test request.


Tissue Sampling Unit (TSU)

The Tissue Sampling Unit or TSU from Allflex provides an alternative to pulling tail hairs to obtain a DNA sample. Guidelines for the correct use of TSUs including storage, transport and documentation to the University of Queensland Animal genetics Laboratory are available here.

Please read these carefully if you are using the TSU’s for DNA collection.