A DNA database is the collection of DNA samples from citizens in a specific country. Since each person has his or her own distinct genetic makeup, a DNA database serves as a type of national identification.

The first National DNA database was in the United Kingdom. Since that 1995 breakthrough, other countries followed including Germany, France, Sweden, Norway, New Zealand and the United States.

The FBI oversees the DNA database in the U.S. In a landmark thesis titled the Technical Working Group on DNA Analysis Methods, scientists probed the use of such a database for crime-solving, however there are other uses for it as well. It can be used for medical purposes and for genome studies and ancestry.

By 1990 the beginnings of the database had spread to six states. They interfaced their systems to share DNA profiles between them. The ability for criminals to escape across state lines was starting to disappear.

The DNA Identification Act of 1994 bestowed the authorization of the database on the FBI, and by 1998 the database called CODIS was in full operation.

Though originally intended to track sex offenders, the U.S. database has grown to include all criminal acts. President George W. Bush put his mark on the operation by proposing that anyone arrested be forced to give a DNA sample whether or not the person was convicted of the crime.

Finally, in 2004, the Justice for All Act grew the reach of the database even further. It allowed for the collection of any DNA information from any state.

Since 2008, in one of President Bush’s final acts, there is a National Contingency Plan which gathers and stores DNA samples from every newborn baby to begin a profile of family DNA, with or without the consent of the parents.

While the intent is to screen for potential health disorders, the DNA database will also be used to screen for behavioral problems so youth can be a candidate for counseling early.

All of the above described database has to do with forensics and criminal cases. This is not the type of database that your test results would be entered in to for genealogy purposes. The two databases do not mix.