Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2015, $271,948)
The Forensic Biology Section of the Allegheny County Office of the Medical Examiner (ACOME) has worked extensively in recent years to develop and implement an automated DNA processing methodology that has effectively increased the DNA sample throughput and improved the turnaround time for casework. With the automated framework in place, the ACOME recognizes the opportunity to bypass potential workflow bottlenecks, streamline the entire laboratory workflow, and reduce the casework backlog through additional capacity enhancements, additional personnel, training, and casework overtime. Through the proposed effort, the ACOME will acquire and implement one new EZ1 Advanced XL liquid handling robot, two QIAcube HID Differential Washing Stations, and one additional ArmedXpertTM DNA analysis software license. Under this program, the Forensic Biology Section will also hire one additional staff scientist, provide in-house probabilistic genotyping training for its current staff members, and make available supplies and overtime for casework performed outside of normal laboratory operating hours. The ACOME projects a budget of $271,948 and an estimated timetable of 24 months (January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2017) for successful completion of the proposed program. nca/ncf.