DEVELOPMENT OF A SHORT TANDEM REPEAT DNA DATABASE TO BENEFIT THE FORENSIC DNA TYPING COMMUNITY. John M. Butler and Dennis J. Reeder, Building 222, Room A353, NIST, Gaithersburg, MD 20899 (301- 975-4368, email: john.butler@nist.gov)

Advances in DNA technology now allow forensic laboratories to solve murder and rape cases and identify missing children and the remains of unknown soldiers. Short tandem repeat (STR) DNA markers are being used in an ever growing number of laboratories. STRs may be amplified from small amounts of degraded DNA using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The length of STR regions are suffiently variable among individuals in a population that STRs may be used for mapping of genetic diseases or human identity testing. While the application of STR markers is becoming increasingly widespread, little effort has been made to bring together the vast body of literature on the subject to make it more easily understood. To date, over 400 references have been gathered and the data from them compiled to make an interactive database which will benefit both research and application of STRs to DNA typing. We hope to make this STR database available to forensic scientists around the world through the World Wide Web.