dna analysis in forensic biology

As you study DNA, you find that every person’s DNA is different from another’s. Identical twins are the only people whose DNA is the same. Consider your parents and your siblings. Even though your brother and your sister have the same parents, it is unlikely that you look exactly like them unless you are identical twins. You may have common features, and you will all share common DNA among yourselves, but only identical twins will have the exact same DNA. DNA testing is used for many reasons, such as the following:

  • Identify potential suspects whose DNA may match evidence left at crime scenes
  • Exonerate persons wrongly accused
  • Match organ donors

Assignment Guidelines

  • Address the following in 4–5 pages:
    • In your first case, you have been asked to list and explain the steps that you would use to identify and analyze DNA from a person who has been in prison for 10 years. The results of your test may exonerate the person.
      • Once the physical evidence has been delivered to the forensics lab, what is the process of identifying DNA? Be specific, and explain in detail.
        • Consider that the evidence is over 10 years old.
      • Once the DNA evidence has been identified, what is the process of analyzing the DNA? Be specific, and explain in detail.
        • What challenges exist that can make your analysis inadmissible in court? Explain.
    • How are tissue matches made? Explain.
    • Why is it important to utilize different DNA testing methods? Explain.
      • Why is it that some methods may be preferred over others? Explain.
    • Other than forensic uses, DNA testing is essential in paternity testing.
      • What are the steps used to carry out a paternity test? Explain in detail.
      • Why might the results of a paternity test be significant in a court case? Explain.
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