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News

Award for pioneering Applied Biosystems forensic scientist

Applied Biosystems : 08 May, 2008  (Company News)
Crime victim organisation recognises leader in the field of forensic DNA analysis specialising in the analysis of degraded DNA.
Forensic DNA analysis plays a critical role in an increasing number of criminal investigations. DNA evidence, when recovered, often identifies the perpetrator of a crime, exonerates the innocent, prevents future crimes and helps deliver justice for crime victims and their families. Issues with aged, compromised or damaged DNA, however, have left some cases unsolved, while complexities with sexual assault sample processing have at other times slowed the laboratory turnaround time for results.

In an effort to eliminate some of the obstacles that are sometimes associated with forensic DNA analysis, Leonard Klevan, PhD. leads a team of scientists and support personnel at Applied Biosystems who are focused on the development of innovative forensic DNA technologies that significantly reduce these issues. These efforts were recognised by the National Centre for Victims of Crime (NCVC), which presented its 2008 Leadership Award to Dr Klevan last night in New York City.

This NCVC Leadership Award is an annual honour that recognises extraordinary leadership and vision on behalf of victims of crime. As president for Applied Biosystems' applied markets division, Dr Klevan has directed the efforts of a team that has developed a number of workflow solutions that enable forensic laboratories worldwide to maximize the use of DNA in human identification and criminal investigations in order to provide more evidence in a timely manner to help solve and prevent a greater number of crimes.

For instance, Applied Biosystems commercialised an innovation that makes it possible for law enforcement officials to use the analysis of degraded DNA, such as aged, compromised or damaged samples, to generate profiles in criminal investigations. The company also improved the processing of DNA samples in sexual assault cases through the development of a new forensic testing kit that enables laboratories to obtain more predictive and comprehensive information from complicated DNA evidence earlier in the testing process, thereby helping to improve results from challenging samples that previously yielded limited or no results.

"We applaud Dr Klevan and Applied Biosystems for advancing new DNA technologies that enhance criminal investigations and give hope to crime victims and their families," said Mary Lou Leary, executive director of the National Centre for Victims of Crime. "Their commitment to technological excellence and innovation demonstrates the key role that corporate America can play in helping individuals harmed by crime experience some measure of justice."

Dr Klevan, who earned a PhD in physical chemistry from Yale University, spent many years directly involved in positively impacting cases in a variety of roles, including as CEO of ReliaGene Technologies, a forensic and paternity testing laboratory. He joined Applied Biosystems in 2006.

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