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Exceptional Achievements in Whole Genome Sequencing for Unsolved Unidentified and Cold Cases!

Updated: Mar 21

In one of the most exciting events in our laboratory's history, on February 22, 2023, Intermountain Forensics (IMF) was notified by ANAB, our accrediting body, of the successful extension of our scope of work. From there, we began the active casework journey of providing Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) results for our partners in their most difficult casework. As we have now reached a year into that journey (not including the countless months of preparation, validation, and implementation) with this amazing technology, IMF wanted to share the successes of WGS for Forensic Investigative Genetic Genealogy (FIGG) Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) laboratory process.


We are excited to share that our results have led to an upload file(s) in more than 82% of the samples sequenced! The laboratory processes that we have carefully chosen and implemented have proven to work well on samples with very small amounts of DNA as well as those that are heavily degraded. We have observed that our testing output yields a significant number of SNPs, and the results of FIGG investigations utilizing our profiles have begun to yield identifications and successful case resolutions.


Make no mistake, our laboratory and our quality management system are committed to continuous improvement, and as such, we continue to find ways to refine, adjust, and optimize our lab work and the bioinformatics that support it. We strongly believe that while this past year has shown fantastic results and has proven the quality and effectiveness of our process, the future is bright, and we commit to never stop improving.


We have also witnessed the strong efficiency and effectiveness that we can provide with our comprehensive forensic sample processing. From specialized samples such as MVAC collection to WGS Sequencing for FIGG upload files, to STR and YSTR confirmation analysis, all within one laboratory, it is our hope to provide precision forensic solutions that bring our partners several steps closer to a solution.


We would like to thank those countless partners who have worked with us, trusted us, and supported us throughout our journey through implementation, accreditation, and active casework. Without you, we wouldn't be here, and we thank each and every one of you for all the passion and commitment to continue this noble path to identify the lost and name suspects in violent crime.


Lastly, to all those lives that have been touched by our work and, in so many cases, provided warm wishes for what we do, we can only say, thank you. It is your stories, your journey, and your unbridled persistence for answers that keep us going. You inspire us! You have our warmest regards from each and every one of the IMF family.

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