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US: Forensics center brings upgraded technology to death investigations
US: New law expands collection of DNA
Germany: Researchers help identify Srebrenica victims with DNA analysis
US: Latest police weapon: iWitness ?
Egypt: Forensic findings shed more light on King Tut
US: Washington State Selects Orchid Cellmark as Sole CODIS Supplier
US: Texas pardons longest-serving inmate, James Woodward, freed by DNA
NEWS ARCHIVE
2014: 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
2013: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
2012: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
2011: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
2010: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
2009: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
2008: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
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2006: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
2005: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
2004: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
2003: 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
TOP STORY OF THE MONTH (November, 2014)

Tue November 25, 14

Complex DNA mixture analysis in a forensic context: Evaluating the probative value using a likelihood ratio model - Forensic article feed - RSS
Recent improvements in DNA typing technologies have led to analysis of increasingly complex profiles in forensic casework. Low level complex DNA mixtures of three or more contributors are fairly commonplace in casework, but interpretation is challenging [1]. Whether such low-template mixed samples should be analyzed in forensic casework has been subject to discussion for over a decade (see [2] for a review). Opponents argued that the level of uncertainty in such samples is so high, that no statistical analysis could be reliably used to evaluate the strength of the evidence.
Sun November 23, 14

Molecular approaches for forensic cell type identification: On mRNA, miRNA, DNA methylation and microbial markers - Forensic article feed - RSS
Within the forensic sphere, propositions can be placed in three generic classes that centre on source, activity or offence level [1,2]. Typical questions at these three hierarchical levels are: “Could the semen present in the evidentiary stain have originated from the defendant?” (source level), “What actions resulted in the observed bloodstaining pattern?” (activity level), “Is the defendant guilty of the crime?” (offence level). Clearly, offence level questions are the duty of the court and not the forensic expert.
Sat November 22, 14

De novo transcriptome analysis and highly sensitive digital gene expression profiling of (Diptera: Calliphoridae) pupae using MACE (Massive Analysis of cDNA Ends) - Forensic article feed - RSS
Insects related to corpses or crime scenes can be a useful tool in forensic investigations [1]. Forensic entomologists use the knowledge about insects, such as species, lifecycle, dietary and reproduction behavior for solving different forensic questions, but mainly for those referring to the estimation of the post-mortem interval. Calliphorid flies are usually the first insects to arrive, often only a short time after death, at the cadaver and to oviposit there. Therefore, the age of juvenile blow flies is a good indicator for the minimum time since death and hence is used to estimate the minimum post-mortem interval (PMImin).
Wed November 19, 14

Massively parallel sequencing of complete mitochondrial genomes from hair shaft samples - Forensic article feed - RSS
Mitochondrial DNA testing in forensic casework has proven extremely useful in those cases for which nuclear DNA is too scarce or degraded to yield forensically informative STR profiles. For particular sample types such as shed hairs–which by some estimates represent up to 90% of the hair samples collected at crime scenes [1] - mtDNA testing is often the only DNA-based testing option. Historically, mtDNA typing has focused on the 600bp of hypervariable segments (HVS) I and II of the ?1100bp mtDNA control region (CR).
Tue November 18, 14

Insights into the origin of rare haplogroup C3* Y chromosomes in South America from high-density autosomal SNP genotyping - Forensic article feed - RSS
The consensus view of the peopling of the Americas, incorporating archaeological, linguistic and genetic evidence, proposes colonization by a small founder population from Northeast Asia via Beringia 15-20 Kya (thousand years ago), followed by one or two additional migrations also via Alaska, contributing only to the gene pools of North Americans, and little subsequent migration into the Americas south of the Arctic Circle before the voyages from Europe initiated by Columbus in 1492 [1]. In the most detailed genetic analysis thus far, for example, Reich and colleagues identified three sources of Native American ancestry: a ‘First American’ stream contributing to all Native populations, a second stream contributing only to Eskimo-Aleut-speaking Arctic populations, and a third stream contributing only to a Na-Dene-speaking North American population [2].
Sun November 16, 14

NOC: A computational method to infer the number of contributors to DNA samples analyzed by STR genotyping - Forensic article feed - RSS
Short Tandem Repeats, or STRs, are repetitive sequences 1–7 base pairs in length that are scattered throughout the human genome. One of the commonly used applications of STRs is in the field of human identification for forensic purposes [1]. An STR DNA profile developed from a biological sample collected at a crime scene is compared with that of a person of interest or run against a database to check for a match.

Expanding X-chromosomal forensic haplotype frequencies database: Italian population data of four linkage groups - Forensic article feed - RSS
X-chromosome short tandem repeat (X-STRs) genotyping is a powerful tool in forensic genetics for solving complex kinship cases and may efficiently complement the autosomal analysis for the higher mean exclusion chance. Due to the specific inheritance pattern of the X-chromosome (ChrX), X-STRs may be more informative about an alleged relationship than autosomals [1].

Testing Central and Inner Asian admixture among contemporary Hungarians - Forensic article feed - RSS
For centuries, great efforts were made by Hungarian historians to study the earliest period of their national history. While the academic mainstream was clearly in favour of the Hungarian language belonging to the Uralic family, many other researchers favour the theory of a closer relationship with the Turkic language family and Turkic peoples. Anthropological analysis of bones originating in the 10th century showed characteristics of Central Asian origin [1–3]. Archaeological remains of weapons, haversacks, belt mountings, and ornaments on clothing also showed similarities to those of Central and Inner Asia [4–7].

Fetal male lineage determination by analysis of Y-chromosome STR haplotype in maternal plasma - Forensic article feed - RSS
The identification of cell-free fetal DNA (cfDNA) in maternal circulation [1] has made non-invasive prenatal testing possible [2]. Since its discovery, the cfDNA has drawn much attention because its analysis provides genetic information about the fetus with reduced risk associated with fetal material obtainment. The amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling carry a small but clear risk of miscarriage [3]. Currently, several applications of non-invasive fetal genetic analysis are available at clinical services, they include detection of fetal sex [4], rhesus D blood type [5], fetal aneuploidy [6], paternal-derived mutations [7] and, also, paternity [8].

A novel multiplex assay amplifying 13 Y-STRs characterized by rapid and moderate mutation rate - Forensic article feed - RSS
Y chromosome analysis is an exceptionally valuable tool both in forensic and human population genetics mainly owing to inheritance along paternal line and susceptibility to genetic drift and patrilocality [1,2]. During criminal investigation, Y-STRs are most commonly used for solving sexual assault cases where identification of the DNA from the male perpetrator requires overcoming huge excess of female component [3]. They are also of a great use in examination of the DNA mixtures donated by multiple males, as well as conducting deep studies on human population history [4] and even in deficiency paternity testing [5].
Last updated : Wed November 26, 14 - 15:33:54




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Oct 05: US: Forensics center brings upgraded technology to death investigations
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Jul 12: Germany: Researchers help identify Srebrenica victims with DNA analysis
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Dec 15: US: U.K. Police Force Veteran, Dr. James M. Hart, to Join Orchid Cellmark Board of Directors
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Dec 15: UWI introduces advanced forensics degree
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Dec 07: US: Friends, lawyers, scientists campaigned for Knox
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