What immunochemistry can bring to light – forensic opportunities of immunolabeling for fingermark (re)development
In the human body, antibodies play a crucial role in detecting foreign substances, also called, antigens. Antibodies are able to locate and bind to antigens, just like a key fits into a lock. Once bound to an antigen, the immune system will be triggered and will respond to get rid of this unwanted invader. The specific reaction between antibodies and antigens can also be used for forensic purposes to detect biomarkers of interest.
In this webinar, Dr. van Dam provides insights on how the antibody-antigen reaction can be used for fingermark development. This technique is also called immunolabeling. Detecting specific biomarkers/targets in fingermarks might enhance the quality of fingermarks, which is useful for the individualization process. Dr. van Dam will share her results on applying immunolabeling to latent fingermarks and she will provide an overview of the pros and cons of this new methodology. Additionally, the steps towards the implementation of the technique to the forensic field will be discussed.
Annemieke van Dam is a post-doctoral researcher in the Forensic Biophysics group at the department of Biomedical Engineering & Physics located at the Amsterdam University Medical Centers, part of the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. She obtained a PhD in 2014, on the development of new methods to enhance the quality and visibility of latent fingermark using immunolabeling. Also, she developed a method to estimate the time of deposition of latent fingermarks using their intrinsic florescence. Currently, she is working on three different forensic research lines; i) the specific detection of components using immunolabeling in fingermarks and other contact traces for fingermark development and donor profiling; ii) optimize the age estimation method of fingermarks (and other human biological traces); iii) DNA labelling methods (FISH) to obtain donor profiling information from fingermarks and minimal contact traces for forensic purposes.
The European Division of the International Association for Identification