Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Texas Creates DNA Database To Identify Missing Persons

Date:
March 18, 2003
Source:
University Of North Texas Health Science Center
Summary:
Texas' new missing persons DNA database is generating a fresh sense of hope for people involved in the search for missing persons, including families worried about a missing loved one, detectives and medical examiners.

Texas' new missing persons DNA database is generating a fresh sense of hope for people involved in the search for missing persons, including families worried about a missing loved one, detectives and medical examiners.

The DNA Identity Lab at the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth developed the database over the past two years and started accepting DNA samples Jan. 1, 2003. Its staff of forensic geneticists will use a direct link to the Federal Bureau of Investigation to expand the search beyond Texas' borders.

The lab's forensic experts will first focus on cases involving children. They will eventually help in a variety of missing persons cases, including cases involving kidnapped children, runaways, the physically or mentally disabled, and those missing after a catastrophe.

UNTHSC is working closely with the Texas Department of Public Safety and its Missing Persons Clearinghouse to raise awareness of the Texas DNA database.

"In Texas alone, 70,000 people are reported missing each year, and 90 percent of them are under 18," said Heidi Fischer, program specialist with the clearinghouse. "Many of these cases are closed relatively quickly, but some remain open for years."

Fischer said the Texas DNA database offers the clearinghouse a new avenue to solve open cases that are beyond the scope of such traditional identification efforts as fingerprints or dental records. When detectives have only skeletal remains or fragments of bone, they must turn to DNA testing. Cases with only the smallest fragments of materials like strands of hair or samples in bad condition, the more specialized mitochondrial DNA testing is the only option.

The health science center's DNA lab is one of only 17 facilities in North America capable of conducting mitochondrial DNA analysis and the only medical school linked to the FBI's CODIS system, said Art Eisenberg, PhD, director of the DNA Identity Lab at the health science center.

"As the database and facility grow, the hope and success of identifying missing family members will grow as well. UNTHSC could expand our DNA services beyond Texas' borders and become one of the nation's regional hubs for the collection and analysis of missing persons DNA data," Eisenberg said.

The state legislature established the Texas Missing Persons DNA Database in 2001 with $1 million from the Crime Victims' Compensation Fund. State Senator Chris Harris and State Rep. Charlie Geren sponsored the legislation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of North Texas Health Science Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of North Texas Health Science Center. "Texas Creates DNA Database To Identify Missing Persons." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 March 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/03/030318074425.htm>.
University Of North Texas Health Science Center. (2003, March 18). Texas Creates DNA Database To Identify Missing Persons. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/03/030318074425.htm
University Of North Texas Health Science Center. "Texas Creates DNA Database To Identify Missing Persons." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/03/030318074425.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued new protocols for healthcare workers interacting with Ebola patients. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) Tens of thousands of doses of experimental Ebola vaccines could be available for "real-world" testing in West Africa as soon as January as long as they are deemed safe in soon to start trials, the World Health Organization said Tuesday. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has set up new guidelines for health workers taking care of patients infected with Ebola. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins