Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New fingermark analysis technique can give extra suspect details

Date:
May 13, 2010
Source:
Sheffield Hallam University
Summary:
A new technique to analyse fingermarks from crime scenes has the potential to give crucial additional details about a suspect such their medications, diet and the time at which they accidentally left the fingermark.

A new technique to analyse fingermarks from crime scenes has the potential to give crucial additional details about a suspect such their medications, diet and the time at which they accidentally left the fingermark.

The technique, under development by academics at the Biomedical Research Centre (BMRC) at Sheffield Hallam University, allows investigators to identify key details about suspects and can even be used to detect any substances they might have touched, such as traces of cocaine.

These extra details can be important background information in a criminal investigation, especially if the suspect's fingerprint is not on the police database. It is hoped the technique will compliment current fingermark detection techniques and assist in criminal investigations.

A fingermark is made up of material from the surface of the skin and from gland secretions, which can be detected and analysed. Conventionally, fingermarks found at the scene of a crime are lifted, often using a powder, and are compared with prints on a police database to identify a suspect.

For the study, academics from Sheffield Hallam used matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionisation mass spectrometry imaging (MALDI-MSI), which is a powerful technology normally used to map different molecules within tissue sections. For the study the technology was used, for the first time, to analyse and produce images of fingermarks.

They found that images obtained using the MALDI-MSI technique were suitable for comparison by classical forensic approaches and provided a wider range of information. They also discovered that fingermarks that had been tested could be re-used allowing further, more traditional forensic testing to produce evidence currently accepted in court.

Simona Francese, from the University's BMRC, said: "Based on the results produced so far and the research currently undertaken we can say this technology can help gain much more information from a fingermark than is currently available. Using it, we could link the suspect to criminal activity and potentially even gain details of their lifestyle by detecting the use of drugs, medication and even diet. This is valuable information to a criminal investigation, particularly if the suspect's print is not on the criminal database."

Rosalind Wolstenholme, who co-authored the report, said: "Not only does the MALDI-MSI technique allow a greater range of information to be obtained from a fingermark, it also does not affect the fingermark so it can still be analysed by classic forensic approaches afterwards. We hope to further develop this technique and integrate it with another portable spectroscopic technique, Raman spectroscopy, making this technological approach complimentary to current forensic technology."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Sheffield Hallam University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Rosalind Wolstenholme, Robert Bradshaw, Malcolm R. Clench, Simona Francese. Study of latent fingermarks by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionisation mass spectrometry imaging of endogenous lipids. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry, 2009; 23 (19): 3031 DOI: 10.1002/rcm.4218

Cite This Page:

Sheffield Hallam University. "New fingermark analysis technique can give extra suspect details." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 May 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100511112412.htm>.
Sheffield Hallam University. (2010, May 13). New fingermark analysis technique can give extra suspect details. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100511112412.htm
Sheffield Hallam University. "New fingermark analysis technique can give extra suspect details." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100511112412.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Some Positive Ebola News: Outbreak 'Contained' In Nigeria

Some Positive Ebola News: Outbreak 'Contained' In Nigeria

Newsy (Sep. 30, 2014) The CDC says a new case of Ebola has not been reported in Nigeria for more than 21 days, leading to hopes the outbreak might be nearing its end. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
UN Ebola Mission Head: Immediate Action Is Crucial

UN Ebola Mission Head: Immediate Action Is Crucial

AFP (Sep. 30, 2014) The newly appointed head of the United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER), Anthony Banbury, outlines operations to tackle the virus. Duration: 00:39 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Confirms First Case of Ebola in US

CDC Confirms First Case of Ebola in US

AP (Sep. 30, 2014) The CDC has confirmed the first diagnosed case of Ebola in the United States. The patient is being treated at a Dallas hospital after traveling earlier this month from Liberia. (Sept. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Breast Cancer Drug Extends Lives In Clinical Trial

New Breast Cancer Drug Extends Lives In Clinical Trial

Newsy (Sep. 30, 2014) In a clinical trial, breast cancer patients lived an average of 15 months longer when they received new drug Perjeta along with Herceptin. Video provided by Newsy
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