Microbes to Help Solve Crimes

June 12, 2018  Source: Ddu 128

Up to date, the most effective method for tracking criminals has been to analyze DNA and fingerprints. But is it possible to solve crimes with the help of microbes?

A research team from the University of Illinois in Chicago have found that criminals can be traced with the help of microbes left at the place where the crime took place. Whether it’s the microbiome in our guts or skin, their relationship without health is quite complex.

Jarrad Hampton-Marcell, who presented the findings, said, "If an individual's microbial signatures are recovered from a built-environment, the human-made surroundings that we people live in, they can discriminately identify a person among other individuals. The microbiome can possibly serve as trace evidence in forensic investigations."

It is believed that around 36 million microbes are emitted into the environment by humans every hour. Everyone’s microbial signature is unique. The scientists said, "Unique microbial assemblages mapped burglars to homes they burglarized with an accuracy greater than 75 percent." Hampton further added, "This study is one of the first to use the microbiome as a forensic tool using unique markers rather than variances in microbial community structure; with further improvement in detection of stable markers; the human microbiome may serve as an additional tool for human profiling and crime scene investigations."

By Ddu
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