Training Programs Offered by the Paleo-DNA Laboratory

Our Ancient DNA Training Program has changed!

From 1999 to 2010 we have offered the Ancient DNA Training Program to students from around the world. We are still offering the same great training but have shifted the focus to make it more hands-on and more exposure to technical equipment. Also, we can customize the new Practical DNA Training Program to emphasize what is most important to you. Please scroll down the page to read more about the Practical DNA Training Program, the Visiting Scholar Program or Ancient DNA Services.

Practical DNA Training Program

For an application, please click the appropriate date:

April 14 - 24, 2020

May 5 - 15, 2020

May 26 - June 5, 2020

June 15 - 25, 2020

July 6 - 16, 2020

Please contact us at 807-343-8877, if you would like to schedule a date.

We can change the dates of the Training Program to suit your schedule, contact us for more details!

Students joining us from outside the city may wish to check out the following links for accommodations:

Lakehead University Conference Services

Thunder Bay Hostels

If you are looking for a good textbook to purchase before attending the Practical DNA Training Program, here is one we recommend:

An Introduction to Forensic Genetics by William Goodwin, Adrian Linacre, Sibte Hadi, published by Wiley-Blackwell.

Please click here to read testimonials from recent students of the Practical DNA Training Program.

Practical DNA Training Program

Join us at the Paleo-DNA Laboratory for our practical two week customized DNA Training Program. Participants will perform the fundamentals of molecular techniques including DNA extraction, amplification (using PCR), sequencing and interpretation. The participants will learn various DNA extraction/purification methods applied to different tissue types. Students will amplify DNA using PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction), real time PCR quantification, Multiplex PCR, and Sequencing PCR. Other techniques covered in the lab sessions include gel (Agarose and polyacrylamide) and capillary electrophoresis, column chromatography, centrifugation, pipetting, and the use of the ABI 3130xl automated sequencer and ABI 7000 real time PCR equipment.

The participants will analyze the control region of their own mitochondrial DNA, the sex chromosomes, and autosomal STRs (short tandem repeats) within their nuclear DNA. One laboratory session is dedicated to the computational aspects of analyzing DNA wherein each participant has their own computer and works through databases, websites and programs that are applicable to their analysis or the interpretation of their results.

This training program is offered at various times throughout the year and we will work with you to find a suitable time for training. Programs are limited to a maximum of 3 students to ensure an optimum learning experience.

Please click here for the Practical DNA Training Program outline.

For an application or more information please contact us at 807-343-8877 or

Visiting Scholar Program

Are you working on a project and just don't have the right facilities? The Paleo-DNA Laboratory offers facilities to visiting scholars that are specifically designed for research involving ancient degraded material. Our clean lab allows researchers to work on samples without fear of contamination with modern material. Reagents and consumables are readily available for use. Highly trained, experienced personnel are on hand to assist you with any questions.

For more information please contact us at 807-343-8877 or

Ancient DNA Services

Let us analyze your ancient or degraded biological samples. The Paleo-DNA Laboratory has methods specifically designed and optimized to handle the presence of inhibitors and highly degraded and fragmented DNA. Our staff has extensive experience dealing with the challenges of analyzing ancient or highly degraded DNA.

For more information please contact us at 807-343-8877 or


Thank you to past sponsors of the
Ancient DNA Training Program:

Sponsors for the Ancient DNA Training Program