Monthly Archives: April 2015

Bone DNA reveals humanity’s trek into South America

AndesSkeletons from Peru caves plot course for a single migration to the continent.

District could spend nearly $1 million for outside lab to test DNA evidence

helix10The District may have to pay as much as $1 million to an outside laboratory to test DNA evidence after two audits found that the city’s own testing procedures were inadequate, two city officials said Tuesday.

Senators Urge Action on FBI’s Use of Faulty Forensic Evidence

dna_justiceA group of Democratic senators on Tuesday urged action from the Justice Department and the FBI in response to a recent FBI study showing erroneous and invalid testimony in 96 percent of cases analyzed involving microscopic hair analysis.

Please join us this Thursday for a free Promega Webinar Examination of Proposed Manufacturing Standards and Implementation of ISO 18385

Promega DNA WebinarPlease join us on Thursday, April 30th, for our latest webinar hosted by Forensic Magazine “Examination of Proposed Manufacturing Standards and Implementation of ISO 18385”. In this webinar, we will discuss the suitability of two methods (STR testing or a combination of STR testing and qPCR) in a manufacturing workflow for the purpose of certifying a product as Forensic Grade.
Register here!

Fresh hope for unsolved cold cases is on its way as the DNA profile bank turns 20

HarbisonA smudge of central nervous system tissue on re-convicted double murderer Mark Lundy’s polo shirt has this month highlighted the mighty power of fighting crime with science. Now new advances could solve some of New Zealand’s cold cases and boost chances of catching criminals. Deidre Mussen report as our DNA profile databank turns 20.

Five Things About Sexual Assault Kits

Justice DeptInvestments in research have dramatically improved the science of forensic DNA testing and our understanding of sexual assault kits. NIJ has released Five Things About Sexual Assault Kits to explain what we know and don’t yet know about sexual assault kits based on research to date, including:

Police can now tell identical twins apart – just melt their DNA

twin dnaWhodunnit? Standard DNA analysis can pin down a guilty criminal, but it can be tough if the suspects are identical twins, who share the same genetic code.
Around the world there have been several cases in which police have been unable to prosecute a suspect because he or she is an identical twin

The First DNA Lab To Be Open In Sindh Today!

DNA LabKARACHI: The first-ever deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) laboratory in Sindh is set to be inaugurated on Thursday by Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah and the lab will help the provincial police and health authorities get the DNA tests done especially during emergency situations, officials said on Wednesday.

Kudos on tackling rape-kit backlog

old DNACollecting forensic evidence from a rape victim takes two to six hours at a time when most of us would want nothing more than a hot shower and to crawl under our own covers.
The payoff is that the evidence, especially DNA, can not only confirm a suspect’s identity or that a sexual assault occurred but also solve other crimes — if it’s ever tested by a laboratory.

BMC develops protocol for preserving forensic evidence after a terrorist attack

DNA in a test tubeBoston Medical Center (BMC) pathologists have developed a set of protocols for processing and preserving forensic evidence, such as shrapnel, bullets and other projectiles, in surgical specimens (i.e. amputated limbs, injured organs, etc.) after a terrorist attack based on lessons learned from the Boston Marathon bombing. Their findings are published online in advance of print in the Archives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.

Forensic science: The soil sleuth

DawsonForensic geologist Lorna Dawson has pioneered methods to help convict criminals using the dirt from their shoes.

New Report Recommends Policies for Improved Preservation of Biological Evidence

Swab and Blood EvidenceFrom NIST Tech Beat: April 20, 2015
All states should have laws ensuring that criminal justice systems properly handle, store and retain forensic biological evidence, according to a new report* from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). NIST’s guide, Biological Evidence Preservation: Considerations for Policy Makers, encourages legislators, judges, law enforcement officials, crime laboratory managers and other policy makers to implement or update laws that support best practices in this critical area.

2 new DNA testing centres in Maharashtra reduces forensic lab’s backlog

old DNASetting up two new DNA testing centres in Nagpur and Pune has reduced the overall pendency of forensic cases in the state from around 75,000 in 2013 to 37,000 in 2014 to 19,774 till February 2015.

Improved crime scene genetics with fungal DNA

Fungal DNANew York- Scientists have come up with a computer model indicating where a dust sample came from within the U.S. This is based on the DNA of fungi found in the sample.

FBI overstated forensic hair matches in nearly all trials before 2000

JE Hoover BuildingThe Justice Department and FBI have formally acknowledged that nearly every examiner in an elite FBI forensic unit gave flawed testimony in almost all trials in which they offered evidence against criminal defendants over more than a two-decade period before 2000.