Just when you thought that we couldn’t get much further into the future, recent developments in the forensic world means that we’re now able to establish specifics about a person’s physical features such as eye and hair colour from DNA samples. This new breakthrough offers endless possibilities as to the ways that it can be applied to practical issues that forensic teams encounter when they attempt to identify potential suspects in criminal matters. Small samples are able to be used to pinpoint lots of specifics about a person, which could eventually lead to prosecutions, and rule out individuals who are put in the frame, but couldn’t possibly be connected to it.
Based on nay DNA left at a crime scene, scientists may now have the means to create visual profiles of suspects, using innovative new technology. Known as the Hirisplex system, it offers the chance to make predictions over phenotypes – the things which determine and person’s eye and hair colour. It has been named genetic profiling and the field is growing with this revolutionary step it. From this point, there’s nothing but hopeful thought as to the impact it could have on the forensics world and how it could revolutionise the field entirely.
Although the new development is a massive step in the right direction, there is said to be a handful of key drawbacks which prevents it from being an extremely useful tool in this field. The number one thing is that it is only able to work from the data of suspect which have previously been apprehended by the police and have their DNA stored in a database. Without that information, it means that it’s still a stab in the dark as to potential perpetrators, and it’s still very difficult to get into the specifics of probably individuals links to a crime, and those who still have nothing to do with it. As well as this detail, it also may to be mentioned that the success rate isn’t perfect. In fact, in some investigations that have previously been carried out, there was a 86% accuracy. It means that it may be effective, but it’s still not able to conclusively determine a suspect’s role in a crime based upon physical looks alone.
£250 million has been supplied to the University of Edinburgh, to help towards their scientific research and the various studies which they are undertaking. The Scottish university won the huge sum by competition against other British universities, in an attempt to fund huge developments which could revolutionise the medicine, veterinary medicine, science and engineering worlds, with their plans on how they hope to use the money. Individual amounts are divided out to specific divisions of the university, all of which are able to use their allocations towards developments for the future development of the university. Over time, we’ll see how it’s been of use to this specific facility and those who work there.
Last year, the university was awarded with £183 million, of which a proportion of the funds were used to create as many as 35 different companies. One of them was EoSurgical. It is run by students attending the institution, made to manufacture innovative new tools for surgeons, and is just one example of the great things being done by the people at the university. Being able to have extra sum on top of it gives them the chance to add to what they’ve already achieved, and potentially come up with whole new research methods which could help towards the future of what they do. It’s all about looking ahead and setting the foundations for the things which can be done in the long-term, rather than expecting immediate usage of the investment over the course of a year.
Derek Waddell is the CEO of the University of Edinburgh’s Research and Innovation. He gave an insight to why their institution was a deserving one, and is a great investment: “These record figures again show the strength and depth of the university’s research excellence as we continue to maintain our position as one of the leading research universities in the United Kingdom. Waddell added more, and explained how it’s going to have wider benefits to the UK’s ever-present money worries too. He said:”They demonstrate the vital role we play in helping to foster growth in the nation’s economy as we transfer academic knowledge, skills, expertise and intellectual property into the wider community.”
We probably can’t even begin to imagine the sort of stress that a doctor has to go through on a regular day in the office. Their workloads is huge from what we see of it anyway, so trying to picture the other aspects which we don’t see just means that it’s probably on a whole other level, and that can really do damage to your morale, when it feels as though you’re just being inundated with more things, and other things just aren’t being done. Doctors have spoken out to clarify that they are feeling the strain and that current resources mean that they have to go far beyond their means to keep the country in good health.
Thanks to research conducted by the Archives of Internal Medicine, it’s been mentioned that those particularly likely to face any cases of excessive stress are the doctors who work in emergency, family and internal medicine. Part of this can be linked to the excessively long hours which they are made to work. Across the board, trends were noted which linked strenuous working hours to exhaustion, although there wasn’t any increase in the rate of depression that these professionals faced, which has to be taken into consideration. While they seem to be taking the added pressures without succumbing to the power of it, it may eventually work towards a massive overload.
Tait Shanafelt is a professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic. He has studied the findings and has spoken on how it could have an effect on the wider medical world; potentially leading towards a high number of people in particular fields leaving their jobs, due to the stress that they are made to endure on a day-today basis. He said “Right at a time when we are trying to provide care to people who are uninsured and projecting workforce shortages we are seeing this burnout rate creep in, which may cause physicians to reduce workloads and consider early retirement.” He also made clear that research has to be put into investigating how environmental in-work factors have an impact upon the way that doctors work and the stress that they have to come under.
Years ago, you would have had to count on old ways of testing the paternity of a child through measures which would have taken a long amount of time in order to garner any substantial findings from. As you are well aware, technology is always evolving and it means that so many things are possible now which never would have been expected a few decades back. One of the things which stand out as a recent breakthrough in the paternity testing field is a mobile variety of them. They gave all-new possibilities, which give people the ability to establish a biological father with added convenience. Mobile units travel around and you get to deal with it when it passes by your area.
Over time, the amount of demand for those who want paternity testing has been on a steady rise. In America, now nearly 500,000 are being taken each year, especially when children are born out of wedlock. Studies into the reasoning behind why these tests have been conducted has noted that, over time, new trends are immerging and there are new needs for some people to know whether a child is there. For example, a notable increase has been among the soldiers returning to the country and being unsure whether their child is biologically theirs. It’s just one example of the noted changes in the way that they’re being used, and the needs of those who are requesting to have them. Having mobile units gives added freedom to those who don’t want to deal with the hassle of arranging the tests themselves, and all that comes with it.
Jared Rosenthal is the founder of Health Stress and dives the mobile paternity testing unit. He has explained how it works, so that everyone gets to grips with the idea of it and what it aims to achieve. “DNA really gets at a person’s identity, it gets to the core of their identity, who your parents are, who your children are, how you define yourself ethnically and culturally. The RV is a little more intimate than a clinic, clients tend to talk more they tell us things, we experience some of these life-changing moments with them.”
How DNA Testing Works