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Metrology Needs and NIST Resources for the Forensic DNA Community



Michael D. Coble, Margaret C. Kline, John M. Butler


With the advent of Forensic DNA profiling in the mid-1980s, this technology has had a positive impact on the criminal justice system, helping to convict the guilty and exonerate the innocent. The field has evolved from focusing on multi-locus markers throughout the nuclear DNA genome to the use of autosomal Short Tandem Repeat (STR) markers. Other marker systems such as mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosomal STR testing have also found an important niche for the identification of missing persons and historical investigations. Given the importance of forensic DNA testing, it is critical that laboratories include proper controls and validated procedures for making quality measurements. In the US, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has developed several Standard Reference Materials (SRMs) to meet the needs of the forensic DNA community. Here we will discuss a brief history of forensic DNA testing and the development of NIST SRMs and educational resources for the field over the last twenty years.
Accreditation and Quality Assurance


National Institute of Standards and Technology (USA), Standard Reference Materials, Short Tandem Repeat, DNA Quantification, STRBase, Forensic DNA testing


Coble, M. , Kline, M. and Butler, J. (2011), Metrology Needs and NIST Resources for the Forensic DNA Community, Accreditation and Quality Assurance, [online], (Accessed May 25, 2024)


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Created May 31, 2011, Updated February 19, 2017