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About Us

image_about-usThe Forensic DNA Phenotyping Project at the Penn Center for Bioethics is part of a larger project, Ethical Issues in Criminal Forensic Genetics, which examines the potential benefits and problems associated with using genetics in law enforcement. FDP is a recent development and has had only limited use in law enforcement.  Yet this technology that promises to help police scientifically predict a suspect’s identity is likely to gain support.

The FDP Project will monitor and analyze developments in FDP internationally.  This website will track changes in the use of FDP, the laws and regulations related to FDP, and the evolving science behind FDP.  It will serve as an authoritative source and gathering place for scientists, practitioners, and students interested in the use of this new technology.

This project is funded by the National Institutes of Health--National Human Genome Research Institute's Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications program, R01 HG004740.





How can you participate?

To help examine the potential benefits and problems associated with using genetic identification technologies in law enforcement, the Forensic DNA Ethics project is actively seeking the participation  ... 

Contribute Materials

If you know of a case in which forensic DNA phenotyping was used other than those included on our site, please tell us about it!


We have an active program of surveys designed to gather data on current practices in forensic science education and law enforcement.  Many of these surveys are by invitation only, although public ... 

featured news

New DNA test could help in Black case
28/04/2011 | Deseret News

Sandra Yi Police here are exploring a new avenue for possible clues in the death of Sherry Black, t ... 

New DNA test developed at Salt Lake lab could help solve 'cold cases'
12/03/2011 | Deseret News

Alex Cabrero Inside an ordinary beige brick building off West Temple and about 2500 South, technolo ... 

Emerging Forensics Field May Hit Legal, Ethical Obstacles
25/02/2011 | Science

Martin Enserink The Dutch parliament adopted a law in 2003 regulating forensic DNA phenotyping, t ... 



Cases OverviewCases Overview

It is not known how often law enforcement agencies have turned to FDP as part of an attempt to identify an unknown suspect or victim; some reports claim that the method has been used in several hundre ... 

Laws Overview

Is forensic DNA phenotyping regulated?
Few jurisdictions have regulations that specifically address the forensic use of DNA for phenotype prediction. The method is still too new and too infrequently  ... 

Research Overview

We are collecting references for papers, reports, conference presentations, or abstracts that report findings relevant to FDP. Our intent is to periodically publish an annotated bibliography that trac ...