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Nucleix Researchers Discover DNA Evidence May Easily be Falsified: Company Develops New Detection Technology for Preventing Biological Identity Theft
Date:8/17/2009

ly-validated technology that can integrate DNA authentication into standard forensic procedure.

Use of DNA fingerprinting as evidence in criminal proceedings relies on the assumption that the DNA sample is genuine. However, standard molecular biology techniques, such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR), molecular cloning and more recently available whole genome amplification, enable anyone with basic equipment and limited know-how to synthesize unlimited amounts of artificial (in-vitro) DNA with any desired profile. Such fake DNA can easily be incorporated into genuine human tissues (e.g., blood, saliva) or applied to surfaces and planted at crime scenes. As reported in the paper, Nucleix's research demonstrated that current forensic procedures cannot distinguish between real and fake DNA evidence. Moreover, Nucleix showed that in vitro-synthesized DNA samples that were profiled by a leading independent forensic laboratory were indistinguishable from in vivo-generated or real DNA.

According to Nucleix, in vivo-generated DNA contains loci that are completely and consistently methylated and other loci that are unmethylated, differing from in vitro-synthesized DNA, which is completely unmethylated. Nucleix's novel proprietary assay can identify and differentiate between real and all potential types of fake DNA through methylation analysis of a set of genomic loci. Results of the company's research demonstrated both the current risk in sample integrity and the success of Nucleix's new approach to DNA source verification.

"DNA evidence has become the gold standard in forensic investigations and criminal justice in the last decade. We are deeply committed to applying our insights into DNA analysis and sample validation technology to ensure the highest level of accuracy and credibility for DNA evidence," said Meirav Chovav, Vice President of Strategic Affairs and Board member. "Based on preliminary response to our research
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