An Open Letter to (some) Forensics People

Dear Forensics People,

When you send out DNA to be sequenced, please, please, please, pleeeeease make sure that the test requested is appropriate, and the DNA is actually useable before you ask to have very expensive and time-consuming tests done on it.

Case in point – the glowing band with the big fat red arrow pointing at it! That band of DNA, according to the size marker on the left-hand side is approximately 200-600 base pairs long. THAT IS NOT GOOD QUALITY DNA. NOOOOOO. BAD QUALITY DNA. BAAAAAAD. I would have to actively try to fragment the DNA to get a band this small when extracting DNA, even from days-old rotting cadavers.

Shitty forensics DNA

The majority of the other glowing bands on that picture are DNA fragments that are ~10,000 base pairs long, which is a good length and ideal for most DNA sequencing applications.

Being able to exctract DNA of this quality shows that you are actually halfway competent at handling various human body parts, and have the requisite three brain cells available to use a DNA extraction kit, which is the molecular biology equivalent of a shake-and-bake mix for paraplegic retards.


Actually, I don’t have the foggiest idea WHY any forensics-related human DNA would be sent to us for sequencing in the first place! Human DNA sequencing tests that my lab performs are RNA transcriptome, cancer-specific panel, whole-exome, whole-genome and targeted panel sequencing! More to the point – NONE OF THOSE TESTS HAVE ANY FORENSIC USE WHATSOEVER .


So, certain forensics people? (you know who you are) Learn to use a DNA extraction kit properly, educate yourselves on the tests you request, and maybe READ WHAT TESTS A LAB CAN DO BEFORE YOU START WASTING OUR TIME AND MONEY.


Kind regards,


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