Environmental, animal and plant forensic genetics
|Presentation of the unit
In addition to SHIFT's specialized fields of forensic entomology and forensic anthropology, WEDF staff members are developing expertise in many other areas, including through research partnerships.
• Example of studies on animal material:
In 2011, the laboratory received a series of exceptional samples in the framework of a case of trafficking of exotic birds: 123 feathers were entrusted to us from a breeding farm presumed to be responsible for trafficking already for a long time. The suspicions were well-founded and the price that the illegal sale of certain parrots could bring in motivated the Federal Veterinary Service to initiate a genetic analysis in order to prosecute this suspected breeder. These analyses revealed that in 3 out of 6 situations examined, the birds were not related, which reinforced the hypothesis of trafficking and allowed the conviction of the fraudster. Subsequently, the laboratory has developed a series of markers allowing the expertise in cases of suspected trafficking of parrots.
• Example of studies on plant material:
The purpose of this study was to assess genetic variation between agricultural hemp varieties and drugs using an assortment of hypervariable STR markers: 13 markers were chosen to genotype 1324 specifically selected samples representing 24 hemp and 15 marijuana varieties.
• Example of studies on human material:
Gastric contents Source d'image