Forensic genealogy group helps Cumberland County investigators crack 21-year-old cold case

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) — A popular genealogy website helped crack a cold case murder of a baby from 21 years ago.

Promega Custom Manufacturing Capabilities Aid in Rapid Development of Co-Diagnostics’ New Coronavirus Test

Promega Corporation is being recognized by Utah-based Co-Diagnostics, Inc. for the support Promega custom manufacturing provided in the rapid development and launch of the new Logix Smart™ COVID-19 Test. Co-Diagnostics yesterday afternoon announced its coronavirus test received CE mark approval and is now available in Europe as an in vitro diagnostic (IVD). The news comes roughly one month after Co-Diagnostics first began work on a test to detect SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

More than 1,000 DNA profiles added to national database from backlogged tested sexual assault kits

MADISON, Wis. (WSAW) — More than a thousand tested sexual assault kits have produced DNA that’s been added to a national database of DNA profiles, Wisconsin’s attorney general Josh Kaul announced Thursday. The announcement follows the completion of 4,472 tested sexual assault kits completed in November, after a statewide project to address a backlog of kits dating back to the 1980s began in 2016.

Woodlands-Based Biotech Company is Helping Solve America’s Cold Cases

Othram uses advanced DNA sequencing and proprietary software to enable human identification applications from degraded and often scare forensic DNA evidence. The company has built the first and only private laboratory to apply the power of modern genome sequencing in a forensic environment.

DNA match leads to arrest in 2004 sexual assault

“After 16 years, you either think your suspect is deceased or they’re already serving a prison term where it wasn’t required to collect their DNA,” said Mountain View Police Capt. Jessica Nowaski in an interview Friday. “I’m just really excited that we were able to bring closure to our victim.”

FBI could hold the key to a notorious Texas cold case. But the info isn’t being released.

AUSTIN — The FBI could hold the key to solving one of the most notorious cold cases in Texas history, but the federal agency won’t release the information because of privacy concerns.
Its stance has frustrated investigators, devastated family members and thrust Austin into the spotlight of a growing national debate over the novel use of what some call family-tree forensics.

Calif. man free after DNA site leads to new arrest in murder

PLACERVILLE, Calif. — California authorities used recently developed DNA techniques to free one man and implicate another for only the second time in the United States, officials said Thursday.
A man who spent about 15 years in prison after being wrongfully convicted in the slaying of his housemate has been exonerated after authorities used extended DNA links developed through publicly available genealogical websites to build a family tree that led to the arrest of a new suspect.

New ‘DNA clock’ finds that if our genes had their way, humans would have a ‘natural’ lifespan of 38 years

Humans have a “natural” lifespan of around 38 years, according to a new method we have developed for estimating the lifespans of different species by analysing their DNA.

NYPD shopping changes to controversial methods used to collect and keep DNA samples of suspects

The NYPD is quietly shopping a change to how it collects and keeps DNA samples of suspects ahead of an upcoming City Council hearing — even as critics charge it isn’t going far enough to amend its more controversial tactics, the daily News has learned.

DHS commences pilot project to collect DNA from certain travellers

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently announced a pilot project to collect DNA samples from certain travellers, which commenced on January 6, 2020.
This announcement has prompted questions from Canadians (and other foreign nationals), who are concerned that they may be required to provide a sample of their DNA when travelling to the United States. Although privacy advocates are concerned about this mandatory collection of DNA, the pilot project, as it presently stands, may not be a significant departure from current practices.

When Did Ancient Humans Begin to Understand Death?

The dead lay in a cave, over a quarter-mile from daylight. Investigators counted remains from at least 28 individuals. The bones were fractured into nearly 7,000 pieces, mixed with bear fossils and mud — and a 6-inch, teardrop-shaped handaxe.
DNA analysis identified the individuals, dated to approximately 430,000 years ago, as early Neanderthals — our evolutionary cousins — or their ancestors.

Senate bill would require DNA testing for all felony arrests

JEFFERSON CITY — Katie Sepich was raped, strangled and set on fire outside her New Mexico home in 2003. After DNA was found under her fingernails, her family hoped that police would be able to catch the murderer. The DNA, however, was not in the federal DNA database, so there was no evidence to tie someone to the crime.

Bill to prevent another rape kit backlog passes a divided Wisconsin Assembly

A Republican bill aiming to prevent another rape kit backlog that includes provisions on school vouchers and undocumented immigration has cleared the Wisconsin state Assembly.

Pliny the Elder died in the Mount Vesuvius eruption of A.D. 79. Is this his skull?

Just before his death, Pliny — also known as Gaius Plinius Secundus, a military leader and author of the influential tome “Natural History” — was fighting pirates in the Bay of Naples, according to Encyclopedia Britannica. When he saw a strange cloud (later found to be the result of the volcano’s massive eruption), he heroically directed Rome’s imperial fleet southward to Pompeii, where they planned to rescue survivors.

Forensic Nucleic Acid Analysis of Uncultivatable Microbes: New Method Expand the Microbial Toolkit

The molecular characterization of microorganisms is achieved by microbial culturing techniques which yield enough nucleic acids for amplification and genetic analysis.