Sources of DNA Evidence
- The biological material used to determine a DNA profile include blood, semen, saliva, urine, feces, hair, teeth, bone, tissue and cells.
The process behind DNA Testing
- Extraction is the process of releasing the DNA from the cell.
- Quantitation is the process of determining how much DNA you have.
- Amplification is the process of producing multiple copies of the DNA in order to characterize it.
- Separation is the process of separating amplified DNA products to permit subsequent identification.
- Analysis & Interpretation is the process of quantitatively and qualitatively comparing DNA evidence samples to known DNA profiles.
- Quality Assurance is the process of reviewing analyst reports for technical accuracy
How the Results are Interpreted
- The DNA analysis process provides the analyst with a chart called an electropherogram, which displays the genetic material present
What are nucleic acids?
- Nucleic acid is a naturally occurring chemical compound that is capable of being broken down to yield phosphoric acid, sugars, and a mixture of organic bases (purines and pyrimidines).
- Nucleic acids are the main information-carrying molecules of the cell.
- By directing the process of protein synthesis, they determine the inherited characteristics of every living thing.
- The two main classes of nucleic acids are deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA).
What is DNA?
- DNA replicates and stores genetic information. It is a blueprint for all genetic information contained within an organism
- DNA consists of two strands, arranged in a double helix. These strands are made up of subunits called nucleotides. Each nucleotide contains a phosphate, a 5-carbon sugar molecule and a nitrogenous base.
- The bases in DNA are Adenine (‘A’), Thymine (‘T’), Guanine (‘G’) and Cytosine (‘C’).
- DNA is found in the nucleus, with a small amount of DNA also present in mitochondria.
Why in News:
- The Supreme Court has recently held that compelling an unwilling person to undergo a DNA test would be a violation of his/her personal liberty and right to privacy
Precedents set by court
- Judges cannot order genetic tests as a “roving enquiry” ( Bhabani Prasad Jena, 2010)
- They must balance “the interests of the parties” ( Banarsi Dass, 2005); DNA tests should also not be ordered if there was other material evidence at hand to prove the case.
- In Ashok Kumar judgment, judges, before ordering a genetic test, should examine “proportionality of the legitimate aims” being pursued.
- DNA Technology (Use and Application) Regulation Bill, 2019