Navigation Links
DNA conclusive yet still controversial, Carnegie Mellon professor says

Although the odds that DNA evidence found at a crime scene will match by chance the DNA of a person who was not there are infinitesimal, controversy continues about DNA identification and its use in criminal investigations, says Carnegie Mellon University Statistics Professor Kathryn Roeder. Roeder will present a historical overview of the use of DNA identification on Tuesday, April 25, during the Annual Symposia of the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C.

Almost 28,000 cases nationwide have been prosecuted with help from the FBI's data bank of DNA profiles, while at least 170 people have seen their convictions overturned on appeal thanks to DNA evidence. Nonetheless, the use of DNA evidence in appeals has been impeded by political considerations and legal uncertainties, according to Roeder. "After all other legal avenues have been tried, the hope of any innocent person is that biological evidence from their cases still exists and can be subjected to DNA testing. But DNA's value to free the wrongfully convicted can be attained only if political leaders allow its full application," Roeder said. "Thousands currently await the evaluation of their cases."

In the early phases, technical disputes among scientists impeded the use of DNA evidence, Roeder said. One of the earliest controversies to erupt over DNA testing was the magnitude of genetic diversity among people of different ancestry.

Some controversy remains concerning the so-called "cold hit" technique, in which investigators search a DNA database to find a match of DNA found at a crime scene and then collect other evidence to build their case -- as opposed to first identifying a suspect through other evidence and then using DNA to confirm their case. Some critics claimed that this practice could snag an innocent person, but Roeder has demonstrated through her own research that the likelihood of a false hit are miniscule -- in one case, for example, it was about 1 in 26 quintill ion, a probability so slight it needn't be shared with juries, Roeder said.

"The jury can't handle such small numbers. We would do them a service to simply tell them it matches or it doesn't match," Roeder said.

Roeder began her career as a biologist, and much of her current research is focused on using statistical tools to understand the workings of the human genome and the nature of inherited diseases. She is a member of the Bioinformatics and Statistics Genetics Group, which includes researchers in the departments of Statistics and Biological Sciences at Carnegie Mellon, and the departments of Psychiatry and Human Genetics at the University of Pittsburgh. The group's primary research goal is to develop statistical tools for finding associations between patterns of genetic variation and complex disease.


'"/>

Source:Carnegie Mellon University


Related biology news :

1. Evidence for omega 3 fats less conclusive than we thought, say experts
2. South Africa still debating how to tackle HIV/AIDS when 5 million are infected
3. Human brain is still evolving
4. Genetic testing still smart choice, despite uncertainties
5. Tuberculosis still a risk for patients receiving HIV drugs
6. One-third of adults with diabetes still dont know they have it
7. Mice lacking key immune component still control chronic viral infections
8. Despite acidity, orange juice could still be a source of foodborne disease
9. Ten years later, Dolly is still making headlines
10. History-hunting geneticists can still follow familiar trail
11. Experimental vaccine given during pregnancy reduces stillbirths from common virus
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:4/11/2017)... 11, 2017 Research and Markets has announced ... report to their offering. ... global eye tracking market to grow at a CAGR of 30.37% ... Tracking Market 2017-2021, has been prepared based on an in-depth market ... landscape and its growth prospects over the coming years. The report ...
(Date:4/5/2017)... -- Today HYPR Corp. , leading innovator in ... the HYPR platform is officially FIDO® Certified . ... that empowers biometric authentication across Fortune 500 enterprises and ... 15 million users across the financial services industry, however ... suites and physical access represent a growing portion of ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... HONG KONG , March 30, 2017 ... developed a system for three-dimensional (3D) fingerprint identification by adopting ground ... technology into a new realm of speed and accuracy for use ... applications at an affordable cost. ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/15/2017)... spending the past two years building a state-of-the-art technology which consolidates ... this platform to healthcare stakeholders (hospitals, foundations, biopharma companies etc.) who ... vis a vis their members, under their own brand. Three recent ... ... ...
(Date:8/15/2017)... ... August 15, 2017 , ... Pittcon is pleased to ... and scientific instruments. This year’s symposium, organized by the Pittcon 2018 program chair, ... Bioanalytical Applications.” This dynamic presentation will discuss novel ionization processes, high throughput IMS-MS ...
(Date:8/15/2017)... ... August 15, 2017 , ... The Conference Forum and ... programming through a series of upcoming panels and events. The partnership culminates with the ... Roosevelt Hotel in New York City. , “With our experience in producing the Immuno-Oncology ...
(Date:8/14/2017)... , ... August 14, 2017 , ... ... and performing antibodies. Key researchers in the antibody community have recently come together ... consistency for antibodies in the laboratory. , The team at ...
Breaking Biology Technology: