Technology Talk: Portable Lasers Could Be the Future of Forensic Investigations

Forensic investigations have come a long way in recent years thanks to advancements in science. By collecting and analyzing DNA left behind at crime scenes, law enforcement investigators are increasingly able to identify potential suspects and victims due to the vast amount of information that these small traces of biological evidence can provide.

However, relying on a DNA analysis also has its drawbacks.

First, a profile must be generated for the DNA. This process can take more than 24 hours and cost hundreds of dollars between reagents and labor.1 Once a DNA profile is generated, it must then be loaded into a database to search for a match. DNA evidence relies heavily on preexisting databases to provide useful identifications—samples that do not have a database match lose most of their usefulness for investigators—until now.