Crop Biotech Update

Researchers Make STR Identification Fit for 21st Century

May 4, 2012

Back in 1998, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) introduced Short Tandem Repeat (STR) identification to recognize bodies or people and create their profiles. The FBI scans a DNA sample for at least 13 STRs, which are collections of repeated two to six nucleotide-long sequences that are scattered around the genome. The reason why STRs are ideal for creating a unique DNA fingerprint is that the number of repeats in STRs can mutate quickly making each set of these genetic markers different from every other person's.

Now, researchers from Whitehead Institute improved the STR identification, to fit in the present needs of geneticists. The researchers have created lobSTR, which is a three-step system that accurately and simultaneously profiles more than 100,000 STRs from a human genome sequence in one day.

Yaniv Erlich, a researcher in Whitehead Institute, said that with lobSTR, access is now provided to thousands of quickly changing markers that scientists could not get before. This newly opened door can be used in medical genetics, population genetics, and forensics.

For further information about the lobSTR research, follow the link below: http://www.wi.mit.edu/news/archives/2012/ye_0427.html.