Research advances in DNA sequencing, bioinformatics, and interrogation of the human genome are providing new tools to: expand our capabilities on the analysis of minute, severely compromised samples; expand our capacity to resolve complex mixtures; and, analyze and interpret new identity, ancestry and phenotype genomic markers from evidentiary samples. The implementation of these transformative tools and markers require the generation of new knowledge relative to understanding the mechanisms of DNA deposition and transfer and new powerful bioinformatic tools.
The mission of this third Gordon Research Conference (GRC) on Forensic Analysis of Human DNA is to create an international forum that fosters open discussions of cutting-edge topics at the forefront of human identification research as well as to support and inspire the next generation of forensic science research scientists.
Topics to be presented and discussed by thought leaders and discussed by attendees will include genetic genealogy, advances using haploid markers, understanding the impact of activity level on deposition and transfer, approaches to tissue source attribution, and molecular research on age, ancestry, and appearance. In addition, focus will be placed on aspects of the DNA-based identification process that includes research on the impact of new bioinformatics and data science advances, human factors and effects of cognitive bias and in areas beyond genomics such as proteomic genotyping.
The comprehensive presentations by thought leaders, and the allotted post-talk discussion time, unparalleled in non-GRC conferences, promotes sharing of ideas and unique interactions between young and senior researchers. These interactions will shape the future of the field and help form the next generation of investigators. In addition, this year our conference will include a Power Hour forum to discuss challenges women face in forensic science and issues of diversity and inclusion. This is an all-inclusive gathering, open to all, with the goal of supporting the professional growth of all members of the scientific community by providing an open forum that enables discussion and facilitates mentoring, networking, and community building.
The conference invites practitioners and researchers at all levels to actively participate in the discussion of all of these topics. Immediately preceding the GRC, the two-day Gordon Research Seminar (GRS) on Forensic Analysis of Human DNA will be held. This meeting offers the ideal setting for early-career research students to interact and exchange knowledge, methods, and experiences in the rapidly developing field of forensic DNA analysis.
The conference will consist of nine sessions, on the topics listed below. The conference chair is currently developing their preliminary program, which will include the names of the invited speakers and discussion leaders for each of these sessions. Please check back regularly for updates to this information.
- Activity Level Research and Impact on Forensic Reporting
- Tissue Source Attribution: Epigenetic, microRNA and mRNA Approaches to Attribution
- Age, Ancestry and Appearance Prediction
- Proteomic, Methylomic and Microbiomics
- Bioinformatics and Data Science
- Addressing Human Factors and Confirmation Bias in Forensic DNA Analysis
- Keynote Session: Unbounded External Insights: Forensic Applications of New Genetic and Biomedical Technologies
- Forensic Genetic Genealogy: Inferring Identity with Long-Range Familial Searches
- Haploid and Alternate Autosomal Forensic Markers