LGC steps up the pace in DNA forensics

Derek Twigg, MP, opens LGC's new automated PACE DNA facility in Runcorn, Cheshire

12 September 2008 - Derek Twigg, MP, officially opened LGC's new fully automated PACE* DNA platform at its forensic laboratory in Runcorn, Cheshire, today. The introduction of the new facility represents an investment of over £1m and marks a step-change in the DNA capability of LGC Forensics, a major division of the international science-based company LGC.

The new platform doubles LGC's capacity to analyse PACE DNA (mouth swab) samples for use in connection with the National DNA Database - LGC now has the capacity to analyse over 340,000 PACE DNA samples a year, more than half of the samples currently generated annually in the UK.

To celebrate the opening of its new, expanded forensic PACE DNA facility, LGC hosted a reception for its business associates, partners and customers. Guests were invited to attend a series of short seminars about various aspects of LGC's DNA forensic work and they also had an opportunity to tour the laboratory facilities.

Hosting the event, Steve Allen, Managing Director of LGC Forensics, said: "The launch of our new automated PACE DNA facility marks a significant milestone in the development of LGC's forensic science capabilities and is a further demonstration of LGC's commitment to the field of DNA and the application of high level analytical science to our forensic work'".

The new PACE DNA facility has 30 staff operating a shift system and the platforms have been designed to run unattended between 9.00 pm and 7.00 am if submissions require.

Dr Angela Gallop, Director of Science and Innovation at LGC Forensics, commented: "LGC Forensics' strategy has been to develop analytical and investigative services to provide the broadest scientific support across all areas of police and other investigative work. This £1m investment supports our increasing presence in the North West and will allow us to serve the needs of local constabularies and law enforcement professionals more effectively than ever. "

The opening of LGC's new automated forensic PACE DNA facility follows the announcement in April 2008 that LGC's new DNA technique for analysing trace amounts of DNA - DNA SenCE - is now in operational use.

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