Biotech Students Attend Forensics Seminar in Dubai

December 14, 2016,

Twenty students within the American University of Ras Al Khaimah’s (AURAK) biotechnology program were invited to attend a seminar titled ‘Forensic Science: Prepare for Next Generation’ at Amity University in Dubai last month. The students are all currently studying from the course ‘Biology 423: Advanced Molecular Biology and Forensic Sciences’ with Dr. Maxime Merheb from AURAK’s Department of Biotechnology.

The seminar was a collaborative event, in which AURAK students and faculty came together to discuss the role of forensics in today’s world, and its importance within the UAE. The chief guest, Brigadier Dr. Abdul Kader M. Al Ameri, director of Sharjah Police’s Forensic Science Laboratory, gave valuable insights drawn from his experience of working on crime scenes.

Dr. Maxime Merheb, associate professor at AURAK, was the keynote speaker at the event, and presented his research, “From Ancient DNA to Forensics: New Approaches in Molecular Species Identification”. His research draws attention to the need for innovative thinking when dealing with old DNA samples. Dr. Merheb focused specifically on the role of genetic sequencing and mathematics in overcoming some of the challenges presented by dealing with ancient samples.

The seminar was successfully concluded with a poster competition arranged by Amity University to encourage students to share innovative ideas within their scientific field of study. Two AURAK students, Nada Anwar and Najath Abdulkareem, presented a poster on ‘Challenges in Degraded DNA Typing’. They were awarded first place in the category of most innovative poster.