Laboratory Accreditation Standards and Guidelines for Nucleic Acid Detection and Analysis

2.4 Retention of specimens and records

Page last updated: 03 July 2006

Commentary

C2.4.1
National guidelines for sample and record retention times are detailed in the NPAAC publication Retention of Laboratory Records and Diagnostic Material.

Nucleic acid storage conditions

Standard

S2.4.1
Nucleic acids shall be stored in a way that minimises degradation and contamination of the sample.

Guideline

G2.4.1
DNA and RNA samples should be prepared and diluted into ‘working stocks’ and ‘storage stocks’.
G2.4.2
Working stocks of DNA are often stable for several months if stored in sealed containers at 4C.
G2.4.3
To minimise degradation, storage stocks of DNA should be held at –20C and RNA should be held below –70C. Positive control samples should be stored below –70C.
G2.4.4
Stocks and controls should be aliquoted to minimise damage from freezing and thawing.