DNA is a nucleic acid that contains the genetic instructions used in the development and functioning of all known living organisms and it is inherited. Therefore, by comparing DNA sequences, geneticists can infer the evolutionary history of organisms. DNA technology or technology related to nucleic acids of living organisms has become an essential part of every part of human life.
The DNA Technology Laboratory (DNA Tec) is a lab facility specializing in the application of DNA technology, which could help encourage Thailand’s competitiveness and enhance the credibility of agri/food exporters and traders. In the present time, non-tariff barriers to trade are multiplying and have become a tough issue facing exporters. DNA technology can therefore play an important role in generating value-added assurance for importing countries and improving the credibility of exporters and traders. DNA Tec offers well-trained genetic experts and advanced tools to provide research and development services to both the public and private sectors.
DNA Tec uses its expertise in genetic identification and advanced tools to provide accurate DNA testing services, including qualitative and quantitative tests to determine the genetically modified seeds/plants or GMO identification tests. These services can help traders and exporters overcome technical trade barriers impeding exports. Available services include:
- DNA identification service for exporters of canned tuna to certify that their products are not derived from endangered species, which is prohibited by the European Union.
- Testing service for proving that exports are not derived from GMOs, which will restore confidence of importing partners.
- DNA fingerprint technology-based method to examine contamination of Thai Jasmine Rice (Hom Mali Rice). DNA Tec has been appointed by the Department of Foreign Trade, under the Ministry of Commerce, to be the official agency responsible for the standard examination of Thai Jasmine Rice exports.
The operations of DNA Tec have also benefited domestic employment and the development of research personnel. It also promotes cooperation between agencies and knowledge sharing. In addition, the presence of DNA Tec will help create a new knowledge-based business sector for this country and will encourage the private sector to invest in more DNA testing services.
DNA Tec was founded by in B.E. 2538 (1995) by the National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (BIOTEC) in cooperation with Kasetsart University. The DNA Fingerprinting Service Unit is located at Kasetsart University (Kampaengsang Campus) and is an academic facility under the supervision of the University.
A sample of contamination examination on Thai Jasmice Rice. In the test, the rice grains were boiled and placed on a slide. The cover glass was then put on top of the grains on the slide. The grains containing white dots were determined to be contaminated.