DNA Sample Reveals Hair Color
"A new genetic test can reveal the hair color of unseen criminal suspects or unidentifiable victims."
Wired Top Stories Download time: Jan 7 2011 9:24 AM ET
A new genetic test can reveal the hair color of unseen criminal suspects or unidentifiable victims.
The new analysis used a collection of recently discovered mutations linked to hair color, and it can predict the hue of an unknown person's hair with about 80 to 90 percent accuracy.
"This could be really useful in cases with no eyewitnesses, where police have no idea who to look for at all," said human geneticist Manfred Kayser at Erasmus Medical Center in the Netherlands, who led the study to be published in an upcoming issue of Human Genetics.
Forensic investigators extract DNA from blood, bones, spit, semen and other bodily stuff left at crime scenes, then check for matches in genetic databases. Until the past decade or so, unmatched samples weren't immediately helpful in crime solving. Recent genetic research, however, has buoyed DNA's forensic value by identifying markers linked to age, eye color, skin color and hair color.…
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