Episode 131 | Just Mitochondrial DNA

In episode seven of the 2020 R&D Season, Just Science interviews Kimberly Sturk-Andreaggi, a Research Scientist at the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory, about the development of entire mitogenome reference data using an automated high-throughput sequencing workflow.   Disaster victim identification comes with a unique set of hurdles. Poor-quality DNA, decades-old samples, and a lack of […]

Episode 130 | Just a Statistical Approach to Glass Evidence

In episode six of the 2020 R&D Season, Just Science interviews Dr. José Almirall, Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Florida International University, about a statistical approach for the interpretation of glass evidence. One criticism levied against trace evidence examinations is that the interpretation can sometimes be too subjective. Interpretation sometimes plays a large role […]

Episode 128 | Just Blowflies and Extreme Temperatures

In episode five of the 2020 R&D Season, Just Science interviews Dr. Travis Rusch, a postdoctoral research associate at Texas A&M University, about fluctuating temperatures in forensically important blowflies. Forensic entomologists use predictable developmental rates of certain necrophagus insects to estimate time of colonization, postmortem interval, and time of death.  However, extreme fluctuations in temperature can affect these development rates in unknown ways. Dr. Rusch hopes to shed light […]

Episode 126 | Just Analyzing Beverages for Cannabinoids

In episode three of the 2020 R&D Season, Just Science interviews Dr. Carl Wolf from the Medical College of Virginia Hospitals about 40 plus ways NOT to analyze beverages for cannibinoids. From professional student, to a leading researcher in the analysis of cannabinoids, Dr. Wolf has been involved in academia for decades. In that time, […]

Episode 125 | Just Skeletal Remains Identification

In episode two of the 2020 R&D Season, Just Science interviews Dr. Heather Garvin, Associate Professor of Anatomy at Des Moines University, about her work with OSTEOID, an online resource for species identification of skeletal remains.  Approximately 30-40% of cases involving skeletal remains received by forensic anthropologists end up being animal bones. Forensic anthropologists can use their expert knowledge to quickly determine if the remains are human. Dr. Garvin and her team are […]

Episode 124 | Just Another Method for Detecting Fentanyl

In episode one of the 2020 R&D Season, Just Science interviews Dr. Ling Wang, post-doctoral associate at Florida International University, about the detection and quantitation of fentanyl mixtures by Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy and Chemometrics. Opioid abuse has grown considerably in the last few years. New fentanyl analogs appear in street drugs at an alarming […]