Saturday, January 26, 2013

Forensic DNA technology: A powerful tool for judicial reform

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Written by Ma. Corazon A. de Ungria, PhD
25 January 2013

Photo credits: Philippine Genome Center
DNA testing is the most powerful tool for human identification. Since its discovery in the mid-1980s, DNA profiling had caused a paradigm shift in the identification of victims, perpetrators and witnesses in numerous cases. The identification of genetic markers that are highly variable in human populations is a major step toward the establishment of reference as well as criminal databases needed for statistical evaluation of matching DNA evidence, or identification of repeat offenders, respectively. In addition, the chemical stability of a DNA molecule against harsh environmental challenges such as extreme temperatures and high humidity makes it more suitable for criminal investigations which lasts for months, even years in the Philippines. Moreover, the fact that a person inherits one’s DNA from one’s parents, provides an investigator with alternative reference samples, when an individual’s own reference biological sample is unavailable.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

8th Genetics Camp held at UPLB

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Ma. Khrisma Soliven with reports from Kezia Grace Jungco

Over 114 high school students and teachers from different parts of Luzon gathered for the 8th Genetics Camp held at the Institute of Biological Sciences (IBS) , University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) last January 19-20.

For this year, the annual event is themed “GENEStability: Sustainable Agricultural Productivity through Genetics and Biotechnology.” It aims to introduce and promote the science of Genetics through its applications. Participating schools include: Recto Memorial National High School (RMNHS), Quezon National High School, St. Anne College, Laguna College, and Don Bosco.