1900Landsteiner discovered the first genetic polymorphism, human ABO blood groups.
1915Lattes introduced and used the first antibody test for blood group (ABO).
1920Locard lays down principle that “every contact leaves a trace”.
1920-1950sDiscovery and application of new blood groups and serum proteins (e.g., MNSs system, Rhesus, Lewis, Kell, haptoglobin).
1960s- 1980sJeffreys invented multilocus DNA fingerprinting, which was followed by single-locus profiling (SLP).
1984Electrophoretic variants of red blood cell enzymes were discovered and used (e.g., phosphoglucomutase, glyoxylase).
1986First time DNA was used in a criminal case (identification of double murderer Colin Pitchfork, in Leicestershire, UK)
1986First forensic application of a PCR-based assay utilizing SNPs at the HLA-DQA1 locus.
1987The decision in New York v. Castro on the admissibility of DNA evidence resulted in strict quality control.
1988First commercial forensic PCR kit detecting SNPs at the polymorphic HLA-DQA1 locus by dot blot and oligonucleotide hybridization.
1991First useful polymorphic human STRs have been identified.
1992First commercial forensic STR profiling kit was developed.
1992First Y-STR was described and used in a rape acquittal (Germany).
1992First application of mtDNA in casework (UK)
1992The National Research Council report on DNA Technology in Forensic Science was published.
1993First mass disaster case (Waco, Texas)
1995A national DNA database has been established in the United Kingdom (STR profiles).
1996The National Research Council report on The Evaluation of Forensic DNA Evidence was published.
1997DNA profiling of touched objects and single cells has been demonstrated.


  • Fundamentals of Forensic DNA TypingBy John M. Butler 
  • Forensic Biology Identification and DNA Analysis of Biological Evidence By Richard Li

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