This Week in Forensic Science

No one has hours to scour the papers to keep up with the latest news, so we’ve curated the top news stories in the field of Forensic Science for this week. Here’s what you need to know to get out the door!




All the Reasons 2018 Was a Breakout Year for DNA Data (Technology Review – 12/29/2018)

  • Gene information on millions of people is revolutionizing how we predict disease, catch criminals, and find new drugs.


New DNA Connections Finally Provide Answers in the ‘Hatbox Baby’ Mystery (AZ Central – 12/31/2018)

  • After 86 years, one of Arizona’s oldest mysteries finally has real answers through DNA science.


Avian Forensic Lab Has State-of-the-Art Equipment to Identify Bird Species, Salim Ali Centre Director Says (Times of India – 12/31/2018)

  • Centre director K Shankar said the state-of-the-art equipment would help in identifying the bird species which are often smuggled.


DNA in the Dock: Crime Dramas Such as CSI are Leading to More Innocent People Being Convicted as Juries Become Disproportionately Influenced by Forensic Evidence, Claims Professor (Daily Mail – 1/1/2019)

  • A study by Professor Morgan found that misleading criminal evidence had been a factor in 22 per cent of successful Court of Appeal applications over seven years.



Baby DNA Tests Raise as Many Questions as Answers (Washington Post – 1/3/2019)

  • The BabySeq project randomized children to receive either DNA sequencing or routine care. Researchers decoded the DNA of 159 infants, including 127 healthy newborns and the rest from the neonatal intensive care unit, at a cost of about $1,000 per child. The data was analyzed for aberrant genes that cause diseases in childhood — meaning researchers left out disease risks that could come later in life, such as Alzheimer’s disease.


This DNA Test for Cats Could Unlock Mr. Whiskers’ Genetic Secrets (C|NET – 1/3/2019)

  • Basepaws’ DNA test promises information on breed and nutritional needs.


How a DNA Testing Kit Revealed a Family Secret Hidden for 54 Years (Time – 1/3/2019)

  • [A DNA test] led me deep into a world I had known nothing about: the history, science and psychological underpinnings of assisted reproduction.


DHS Seeks Reach-Back Tech for Fielded Rapid DNA Systems; ICAM On-the-Fly (Biometric Update – 1/3/2019)