The Sound Of Speeding Justice

Some good news from the world of forensics, for once.

I’ve commented before in this blog about the backlog of untested rape kits in this country.  One of the reasons for the backlog is the length of time it takes to process the kits.  It can take upwards of twelve hours to separate sperm DNA from female DNA when processing a kit, and requires several attention-intensive centrifuge cycles, in addition to having numerous opportunities for contamination of evidence.

Teams of researchers (thank goodness somebody is paying attention to the problem) in Sweden and the US have developed a method that uses sound waves to isolate sperm cells in a sample, and does so in 14 minutes, which is much, much, much faster than current methods.

This is very good news, for rape victims in particular and civilized society in general.

Even better, the researchers are still attempting to make the technique even simpler to use, via “one-time chip” method – and I’m not going to explain that; quit being lazy and just read the link above – and, should they succeed in doing this and keeping the costs of the procedure down, getting away with rape won’t be so easy anymore.

Maybe life is finally catching up to CSI?  We can only hope. . .

VS – 7.19.09


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