DNA

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DNA

n. scientifically, deoxyribonucleic acid, a chromonal double chain (the famous "double helix") in the nucleus of each living cell the combination of which determines each individual's hereditary characteristics. In law, the importance is the discovery that each person's DNA is different and is found in each living cell, so a hair, blood, skin or any part of the body can be used to identify and distinguish an individual from all other people. DNA testing can result in proof of one's involvement or lack of involvement in a crime scene. While recent DNA tests have proved a convicted killer on death row did not commit a crime and resulted in his release, current debate concerns whether DNA evidence is scientifically certain enough to be admitted in trials. The trend is strongly in favor of admission.

DNA

abbreviation for deoxyribonucleic acid, a chemical which is found in virtually every cell in the body and which carries genetic information. Except for identical twins, each person's DNA is unique. DNA profiling doesn't allow the examination of every single difference between people's DNA so the concentration will be on those aspects which are most likely to yield a difference. DNA can be extracted from any cells that contain a structure called the nucleus, for example, blood, semen, saliva or hair.

Mitochondrial DNA is inherited only from a person's mother. Brothers and sisters have the same mitochondrial DNA type as their mother. This feature of mitochondrial DNA can be used for body identification. The γ-chromosome is present only in men and is largely unchanged as it passes through the male line of a family. The usefulness of the technique in criminal matters is vastly enhanced by the extent to which it is possible to compare a sample with other individuals. To this end there is a National DNA Database maintained by the ASSOCIATION OF CHIEF POLICE OFFICERS and managed by the FORENSIC SCIENCE SERVICE. Techniques vary. There is a UK offence of DNA theft. It is also of assistance in paternity matters.

References in periodicals archive ?
Noncanonical DNA structures can form in an equilibrium with B-DNA duplexes, depending on the sequence and surrounding nuclear conditions.
In addition to the artistic allure of the DNA structure itself, DNA-fingerprinting patterns have inspired interesting new art.
Hydroxyl radical is a nearly ideal chemical probe for mapping genomic DNA structure. Here, all possible single-base substitutions for each putative TFBS were generated.
Calderan, a self-proclaimed extreme adventurer and King Of The Desert, in an attempt to promote a genomics test of one's DNA structure, has been running on a treadmill non-stop for 10 hours a day since Monday at the Human Genome Meeting at World Trade Center.
Bacteria is not only using the arsenic but also adding the arsenic to its life mechanism something like its DNA structure.
Maurice Wilkins, a Nobel Prize-winning molecular biologist, instrumental in the discovery of the DNA structure 8.
THE PATENTED SANICART-UV SYSTEM IS A COMPACT METAL UNIT that uses high-intensity germicidal ultraviolet light technology to destroy the DNA structure of germs, bacteria and viruses found on shopping carts, according to company officials.
ABERYSTWYTH University has been awarded pounds 1.6m to develop a physical map of ryegrass' genome (DNA structure).
Especially understanding DNA structure and function is essential for understanding key concepts of molecular biology such as DNA, central dogma and the manipulation of DNA.
Because there is no one to one correspondence between DNA structure and development, knowledge of a particular DNA sequence gives us no knowledge of invariable laws of nature.
Slight imperfections in the DNA structure make mutations possible, and without mutations no evolution toward higher life forms could take place.
"We coined the term 'xDNA' to emphasize the fact that each effect paint has a unique, three-dimensional mathematic model, similar to the way that each person has a unique DNA structure," said Brian Teunis, market manager, X-Rite's industrial color and appearance division.