Blood of King Albert I identified after 80 years

Tree Leaves RelicThe death of King Albert I of Belgium in 1934 — officially a climbing accident — still fuels speculation. Forensic geneticist Maarten Larmuseau and his colleagues at KU Leuven (University of Leuven, Belgium), have now compared DNA from blood found on the scene in 1934 to that of two distant relatives. Their analysis confirms that the blood really is that of Albert I. This conclusion is at odds with several conspiracy theories about the king’s death.

Inside look at lab’s analysis of VA’s untested rape kits

VA BacklogFor the first time, 13News Now was able to get an inside look at the lab analyzing thousands of untested rape kits, which hold evidence taken from victims in Virginia.
As part of our year-long “Test the Kits” investigation, we traveled to Northern Virginia to show you the work that could hold the keys to solving rape cases that date back decades. Hundreds of them are from Hampton Roads.

First farmers had diverse origins, DNA shows

Zagros MountainsResearchers compared the genomes of ancient Neolithic skeletons from across the Middle East, where farming began.
The results shed light on a debate over whether farming spread out from a single source in the region, or whether multiple farmer groups spread their technology across Eurasia.

Czech police to use plant, animal DNA in fighting crime

navy DNAPrague, July 14 (CTK) – Experts from the Czech Institute of Criminalistics are testing a new method of revealing crime that is based on “non-human genetics” or plant and animal DNA, within a five-year project launched at the beginning of this year, daily Pravo writes on Thursday.

Russian scientists dissect ancient organs from 800-year-old mummy

SalekhardThe child, aged around six or seven, was found close to the town of Salekhard. Researchers took samples of tissue and probed the boy’s internal organs.
It is hoped these will reveal how people lived at the time, possibly their diet. Experts have started establishing the boy’s DNA and hunting for descendants

State will use Battelle DNA technology at crime lab

BushLONDON, Ohio — The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation soon will boost its DNA testing abilities, thanks to new technology from Battelle.
Attorney General Mike DeWine announced Thursday that the bureau is working with Battelle, the Columbus nonprofit research giant, to validate new DNA-sequencing — called Next Generation Sequencing — technology.

DNA testing by University of Canberra forensics lab to make molecular sketches of crime suspects

McNevinA Canberra forensic laboratory will be the first in Australia to test the ancestry of crime scene DNA, opening up a world of potentially predicting a suspect’s eye or skin colour.

Kuwait set to collect DNA

navy DNAKUWAIT CITY, July 12: Kuwait will start implementing the law requiring all citizens, expatriates and visitors to submit DNA samples later this summer, reports Alternet quoting Kuwaiti officials.
According to the report published Monday on the website of Alternet, the DNA samples of at least 3.3 million people will be stored in the government’s database which costs around $400 million. This makes Kuwait the first country in the world to legislate mandatory collection of DNA samples.

Today’s technology to uncover yesterday’s secrets at an early settler’s burial ground at Milton

Milton Burial GroundThe group, the Tokomairiro Project 60 research team, is undergoing a public submission process to enable the digging-up of 20-30 skeletons from St John’s Burial Ground, amid farmland on Milton’s Back Rd.

Humanity plagued by single strain of bacteria

Yersinia PestisHistorians and scientists alike have long wondered whether the various disease pandemics that have plagued humanity since the sixth century shared a common cause.
Ancient DNA samples and historical climate patterns all pointed to the theory that a single, super-resilient germ managed to survive through the ages. But the final genetic piece in the puzzle was missing – until now.

Red Cross Collecting Samples to ID Missing From Lebanon War

navy DNABEIRUT — Habib Wehbe disappeared in 1976, in the first year of Lebanon’s 15-year civil war. He was 25 years old, young and politically engaged — a contributing writer to the Lebanese Communist Party’s flagship newspaper and a secondary school teacher in the capital’s suburbs.
Forty years later and still missing, his bereaved sisters are now providing DNA samples to the International Committee for the Red Cross as part of an initiative that the organization hopes will encourage Lebanon’s government to solve thousands of disappearances dating back to the country’s civil war.

Poster Deadline Is This Friday For ISHI!

ISHI 27Share your work by presenting a poster at the biggest symposium in DNA forensics. This year’s International Symposium on Human Identification will attract leading experts in forensics from around the world.
More than 100 scientific posters will be presented during the conference covering all aspects of DNA forensics. Abstracts from all posters are posted on the official conference web site and published in the online Proceedings after the meeting.
Poster abstracts must be submitted online by July 15.

House Committee Ok’s Bill Letting The FBI Use Rapid DNA Profiling

new blue helixA DNA evidence bill that would let police in the field, not just technicians in an accredited lab, quickly test the genetic material of suspects has advanced to the House floor.
The measure centers around a relatively new screening instrument the size of a printer, called Rapid DNA.

NIST 3D Ballistics Research Database Goes Live

3D Impressions NISTIt’s a staple of the TV-crime drama: a ballistics expert tries to match two bullets using a microscope with a split-screen display. One bullet was recovered from the victim’s body and the other was test-fired from a suspect’s gun. If the striations on the bullets line up—cue the sound of a cell door slamming shut—the bad guy is headed to jail.

Laboratory Artist Puts a Human Face on Unidentified Remains

unidentified remainsNationwide, about 4,400 unidentified remains are found each year—and more than 1,000 of those are still unidentified a year later, according to the National Institute of Justice, which maintains searchable databases of missing and unidentified persons (NamUs.gov). Medical examiners and local police departments most frequently become the stewards of unidentified remains. And each year, about 20 requests are made to the FBI Laboratory to develop facial approximations of unidentified individuals to help investigators ultimately put a name to a face.