This report was published in RTI Press, a global publisher of peer-reviewed, open-access publications on a broad range of topics. The areas of focus reflect RTI’s multidisciplinary research, our expertise in social and laboratory sciences, and our extensive international activities. Since 2008, the RTI Press has produced more than 100 publications.

Report Date

June 2017

Abstract

The 2017 National Institute of Justice (NIJ) Forensic Science Research and Development (R&D) Symposium is intended to promote collaboration and enhance knowledge transfer of NIJ-funded research. The NIJ Forensic Science R&D Program funds both basic or applied R&D projects that will (1) increase the body of knowledge to guide and inform forensic science policy and practice or (2) result in the production of useful materials, devices, systems, or methods that have the potential for forensic application. The intent of this program is to direct the findings of basic scientific research; research and development in broader scientific fields applicable to forensic science; and ongoing forensic science research toward the development of highly discriminating, accurate, reliable, cost-effective, and rapid methods for the identification, analysis, and interpretation of physical evidence for criminal justice purposes.

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About the Authors

Nicole Suzanne McCleary, MS, is the associate director of strategic planning and operations in the Center for Forensic Sciences (CFS) at RTI International.

Gerald LaPorte, MSFS, is a supervisory physical scientist and director of the Office of Investigative and Forensic Sciences at the National Institute of Justice.

 

This report was published in RTI Press, a global publisher of peer-reviewed, open-access publications on a broad range of topics. The areas of focus reflect RTI’s multidisciplinary research, our expertise in social and laboratory sciences, and our extensive international activities. Since 2008, the RTI Press has produced more than 100 publications. 

Report Date

July 2016


Report Summary

The 2016 NIJ Research and Development Symposium is intended to promote collaboration and enhance knowledge transfer of NIJ-funded research. The NIJ Research and Development (R&D) Program funds both basic or applied R&D projects that will (1) increase the body of knowledge to guide and inform forensic science policy and practice, or (2) result in the production of useful materials, devices, systems, or methods that have the potential for forensic application. The intent of this program is to direct the findings of basic scientific research; research and development in broader scientific fields applicable to forensic science; and ongoing forensic science research toward the development of highly discriminating, accurate, reliable, cost-effective, and rapid methods for the identification, analysis, and interpretation of physical evidence for criminal justice purposes. NIJ and the Forensic Technology Center of Excellence are committed to improving the practice of forensic science and strengthening its impact through support of R&D, rigorous technology evaluation and adoption, effective knowledge transfer and education, and comprehensive dissemination of best practices and guidelines to agencies dedicated to combating crime.

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About the Authors

 

Nicole Suzanne McCleary, MS, is the associate director of strategic planning and operations in the Center for Forensic Sciences (CFS) at RTI International.

Gerald LaPorte, MSFS, is a supervisory physical scientist and director of the Office of Investigative and Forensic Sciences at the National Institute of Justice.

 

Overview

The Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE) assisted the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) in hosting the annual NIJ Forensic Science Research and Development (R&D) Symposium on February 14, 2017 at the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS) meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana. The NIJ Forensic Science R&D Symposium is a free and open meeting where attendees learned about NIJ-funded research across a variety of forensic science areas.

 

Conference Proceedings 

RTI Press: 2017 NIJ Forensic Science R&D Symposium

Archived Presentations

Morning Session I: Impression Pattern & Trace Evidence

Presentation Topics:
The Fluid Dynamics of Droplet Impact on Inclined Surfaces with Application to Forensic Blood Spatter Analysis
Illuminating Lifestyles by Metabolomics of Personal Objects
Audio Forensics of Gunshot Sounds
Characterization of Organic Firearms Discharge Residue: Progress and Potential

Morning Session II: Forensic Biology & DNA

Presentation Topics:
► Forensic DNA Phenotyping of Quantitative Pigment in Human Physical Appearance Prediction
► Proteomic Analysis of Menstrual Blood for Forensic Identification
► An Optimized DNA Analysis Workflow for the Sampling, Extraction, and Concentration of DNA Obtained from Archived Latent Fingerprints
► The Enhancement of the Native American CODIS STR Database for use in Forensic Casework

Afternoon Session I: Anthropology and Microbial Forensics

Presentation Topics:
► Measuring Desiccation: A System Using Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis
► Statistical Methods for Combining Multivariate and Categorical Data in Postmortem Interval Estimation
► The Isotopic Taphonomy of Human Hair
► Adult Skeletal Age Estimation: Tackling Long-Standing Problems with a New Approach

Afternoon Session II: Controlled Substances and Toxicology

Presentation Topics:
► Novel Blood Protein Modification Assay for Retrospective Detection of Drug Exposure
► Stability of Synthetic Cathinones in Biological Evidence
► Towards Development of a Mass Spectrometric Database for Rapid Identification of Plant Drugs of Abuse Using Ambient Ionization Mass Spectrometry
► One Pot Methamphetamine Effluent Characterization

Symposium Agenda

Click here to view the symposium agenda.

Report Date

December 2016


Purpose

In 2016, the National Institute of Justice’s Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE) at RTI International hosted a three-part webinar series on Microbial Forensics in collaboration with the University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC). The objective of this webinar series was to discuss the history and basics of microbial forensic investigations, provide the viewer with an understanding of microbiology as applied to forensics, and evaluate the ways in which microbial forensics can be expanded to resolve forensic casework.


Report Summary

This report summarizes the content of the 2016 three-part webinar series, as well as the reception of the series by the forensics community. The project team made surveys available to all participants immediately following each webinar to obtain data metrics to assess the quality and impact of discussion content, and to gain information on the structure of the web audience. The webinar series and this document is available on the FTCoE website, www.ForensicCOE.org, therefore providing the community with a resource for future reference and sustainability.

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Archived Webinar Series

For more information, check out the archived webinar series on microbial forensics.

Session 1: Learning About Microbial Forensics
Click here to view the webinar

Session 2: Basics of Microbiology as they Apply to Microbial Forensics
Click here to view the webinar

Session 3: Expansion of Microbial Forensics 
Click here to view the webinar