ROBERT LONGUEHAYE, NIBSC / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROBERT LONGUEHAYE, NIBSC / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Laboratory glassware and DNA profile. Bottle and petri dishes containing coloured fluids lying beside a DNA profile. DNA (Deoxyribonucleic Acid) is the basis of a person's genetic material. A DNA profile (at upper right) is made when selected DNA extracted from a person is separated into bands by electrophoresis in a gel. The exact banding pattern is unique to each person but some bands are shared by related people, such as a parent and child. Such DNA "fingerprints" can be used to prove whether people are related. They can also be used to identify and convict criminals from blood, semen or hair left at the scene of a crime.
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