The laboratory has been hard at work finishing up a variety of different validations of essential equipment. The first of those to be complete is the M-Vac DNA sampling system. This is a pretty amazing piece of equipment that is built by a company right in Utah (https://www.m-vac.com/) The concept is simple. Swabs work great on hard, non-porous surfaces like glass or tile. Imagine trying to use that same swab on a really rough surface like a cinder block or a surface that is tough to remove material from like fabric or leather. It works.. but not well. The M-Vac works like a wet vaccum "rug doctor", spraying a liquid on the surface of the evidence and then sucking it up into a sterile container. The liquid collection is then passed through a sterile filter that traps the biological material and allows us to discard the liquid. The filter is dried and can then be used for DNA extraction just like swab samples.
The M-Vac works much better than swabs on these materials. In fact, the Federal Bureau of Investigation recently did a study (and our v alidation confirms it with similar results) that concluded that "Overall, the wet‐vacuum yielded an average of 12 times more nDNA compared to the wet‐swab."
We are excited to have this validation completed and be ready to apply this fantastic technology to our casework!