03 Jan '12, 9pm

Human error leads to re-testing of 2,000 DNA samples from 87 criminal cases here

SINGAPORE - An error by a Health Sciences Authority (HSA) laboratory manager has led to the authorities re-testing almost 2,000 DNA samples from 87 criminal cases. The staff had misread the label of HSA's test solution and used a stronger concentrate for dilution. As a result, the sensitivity of the tests was reduced when low levels of DNA - such as those found on hair or skin - are examined. At a press conference yesterday, HSA chief executive John Lim apologised for the error. He said: "I'm very sorry that this incident took place. Although the scientific impact is assessed by experts to be minimal ... the fact is, the impact on the investigational and legal system has been significant and can cause great public concern if it's not openly and thoroughly explained." Mr Lim added: "The main implication is with low-level DNA samples, where the low sensitivity of the reagent...

Full article: http://www.todayonline.com/Singapore/EDC120104-0000042/Er...

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