In the context of present-day developments, DNA analysis appears to be an essential tool for numerous fields. Modern biology and biochemistry intensively use methods, which are based on recombinant DNA. In addition, it is applied in bioinformatics, which implies data mining, which is contained in the DNA sequence. It is also used in history in order to prove or contradict some facts and analyze relationships between people. Furthermore, DNA analysis is extremely informative while conducting forensic science in order to investigate crimes. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to describe its details, such as the PCR process, loci and their relation to CODIS, and the functions of touch DNA.
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Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a method of molecular biology, which allows for the achievement of a significant increase in small concentrations of nuclear acid fragments of biological material. Apart from amplification of DNA, PCR is beneficial for producing multiple other manipulations with nuclear acids (PCR basics, n. d.). For instance, this approach is helpful for the diagnosis of diseases, identifying paternity, cloning genes, and producing new genes (PCR basics, n. d.). The method is based on multiple electoral copying of a specific part of DNA nuclear acid via ferments in vitro (PCR basics, n. d.). In addition, the copying is realized only in the fragment, which matches the set conditions, and only in case, it exists on the sample, which is explored.
By contrast with DNA amplification in alive organisms, relatively short parts of DNA may be analyzed via PCR. According to ThermoFisher Scientific, it is stated:
“amplification is achieved by a series of three steps: (1) denaturation, in which double-stranded DNA templates are heated to separate the strands; (2) annealing, in which short DNA molecules called primers bind to flanking regions of the target DNA; and (3) extension, in which DNA polymerase extends the 3′ end of each primer along the template strands” (PCR basics, n. d.).
The Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) presents the DNA database of the United States, which is ruled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. This term is closely connected to loci, which implies a particular physical location of DNA or gene on the chromosome (Bell et al., 2019). There are 13 loci that are called the CODIS core (Bell et al., 2019). They were chosen due to their location in regions of noncoding DNA. In other words, they are the parts, which do not code for proteins.
Touch DNA implies the analysis of skin cells, which appears when a person touches some surfaces. Therefore, each touch samples involve a specific amount of DNA. Therefore, the analysis of touch DNA may present strong evidence in some cases, as this examination is difficult to be argued. However, several samples of touch DNA may lead to a mixture problem (Bell et al., 2019). For instance, in the case of a criminal investigation, when several different people touch one object, it is challenging to identify the guilty one. Thus, it is important to use this tool carefully and take into consideration all the details.
These days, DNA analysis presents the field, which is rapidly and continuously developing, as it responds to the needs of various sciences. It is extremely relevant in the context of criminal investigations, as they are helpful for proving or contradicting the guilt of particular people. However, DNA analysis implies a great number of detail regarding its processes, and they require further development in the future.
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Bell, S., James, S., & Nordby, J. J. (2019). Forensic science: An introduction to scientific and investigative techniques (5th ed.). CRC Press.
PCR basics. (n. d.). ThermoFisher Scientific. 2021, Web.