Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $382,398)
The Cuyahoga County, Ohio Regional Forensic Science Laboratory (CCRFSL) is the primary accredited DNA Analysis Laboratory for Cuyahoga County and the region, serving the 2nd largest population in Ohio and maintains FBI Quality Assurance Standards for Forensic DNA Testing Laboratories for inclusion in the Combined DNA Index /National DNA Index System(s). According to the recent 2020 U.S. Census and its alignment to data within the January 2023 Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool (CEJST), Cuyahoga County has nearly one-half of its census tracts designated as disadvantaged communities. As such, the CCRFSL herein submits its priority consideration for award funding to specifically meet the needs of those disadvantaged Cuyahoga County communities, notwithstanding to meeting the needs throughout the region.
The CCRFSL application proposes to enhance its DNA extraction capacity with additional Maxwell RSC 48 Promega “Sole Source” extraction platforms. Maxwell RSC 48 is an automated DNA purification platform that simultaneously processes up to 48 samples. Currently, the laboratory uses three Maxwell 48 platforms to extract DNA. Increasing capabilities will improve the DNA capacity to handle more items in less amount of time.
For the Capillary electrophoresis detection platforms, the laboratory’s goal is to adapt the latest technology that can
address future needs and handle current requirements. Currently, the laboratory uses AB 3500 genetic analyzers to detect
amplified DNA templates. More recent advancements in Genetic Analyzer for capillary electrophoresis instruments offer
higher laboratory throughput and flexibility. The new Genetic Analyzer for capillary electrophoresis has 8 capillaries, four
96-well plate positions and provides continuous access to those plates. This provides the capability to run partial plates and
add samples during a run which allows scheduling flexibility while still maintaining productivity and assuring no efficiency
loss with partial plate runs. The new Genetic Analyzers for capillary electrophoresis also supports the next generation of 8-
dye STR Systems which will enable amplification and detection of more loci from challenging casework samples.