Justice through genomics
Othram enables human identification from difficult evidence such as touch DNA, rootless hair, and decades-old bones.
Othram achieves results even when other approaches fail.
We decipher genetic identities so you can solve cases.
Othram is the first private laboratory built to apply the power of modern parallel sequencing to forensic evidence. Our scientists are experts at recovery, enrichment, and analysis of human DNA from trace amounts of degraded or contaminated materials. We help investigators break through previously impenetrable forensic DNA barriers and close previously unsolvable cases.Request analysis
Purpose-Built for Forensics
Othram features essential infrastructure and process for testing forensic DNA evidence, including upfront DNA profile feasibility assessment, to avoid unnecessary evidence consumption, automatic human enrichment, and separate unidirectional workflows.
Optimized for Identification
Othram digitizes many types of genetic variation, powering proprietary KinSNP™ analysis, mixture deconvolution, and genealogy. These methods, in combination with the DNASolves™ database and other resources, enable human ID from forensic evidence.
Secure and Accountable
Othram uniquely offers in-house processing of evidence, from DNA extraction and enrichment, to sequencing and genealogy. Our lab supports chain of custody and is staffed by seasoned forensic DNA analysts with experience testifying in court.
In 1966, a young woman checked into the Ropers Motel with an unknown male companion. Hours later, a hotel employee found the woman’s body in the hotel pool. As the woman was being taken away in an ambulance, her companion checked out of the hotel and was never seen again.
Othram reached out to the Pecos Police Department to help identify the woman using advanced DNA testing. Skeletal remains were brought to Othram to extract DNA from the bone, and then to construct a DNA profile using Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing®.
In July 2018, two hikers found a deceased male hiker in a tent at the Big Cypress National Preserve in Collier County, Florida. Other hikers met him in 2017 and 2018, but none of them knew his true identity. Identification was further complicated by the use of aliases and cash.
Ultimately through the efforts of law enforcement, tips from the crowd, and Othram DNA testing, the Collier County Sheriff's Office identified the hiker as Vance Rodriguez.
In December 1982, a truck driver notified the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department of a possible sighting of a body in the river near Moss Point, Mississippi. Responding deputies recovered the remains of a female toddler caught in the brush downriver.
Othram's forensic scientists applied proprietary enrichment methods and Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing™ to produce a genetic profile that led to new leads. After 38 years, Delta Dawn's name was restored as Alisha Ann Heinrich.
Siobhan McGuinness was a bright and energetic 5-year-old girl living in western Montana. One evening in early 1974, she disappeared while walking home from her friend’s house. Siobhan’s body was found two days later stuffed into a snowy culvert.
Othram's Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing® process was applied to the DNA extract to produce a genealogical profile from less than 400 pg of highly degraded DNA. Law enforcement used the profile to perform a genealogical investigation, ultimately identifying Siobhan's suspected assailant.
Hikers near Harvard, Illinois discovered a body near the Rush Creek Trails in May 2019. The McHenry County Coroner’s Office attempted to identify the unknown man using fingerprints, dental records, and CODIS testing, but traditional approaches were unsuccessful.
Remains were sent to Othram and a DNA profile was built using Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing®. An investigative lead was returned to Chief Deputy Coroner, Olivia Zednick. Together, her team and Othram confirmed the identity of the unknown man.
In October of 1984, 9-year-old Christine Jessop got off her school bus in Queensville, Ontario, and walked to meet a friend at the park. Christine never made it. A massive search revealed no indication of what had happened. Christine’s body was found off a rural road in Sunderland, Ontario a few months later.
In 2019, Toronto Police investigators partnered with Othram to leverage Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing™ to build a genealogical profile from the scant quantity of highly degraded DNA that remained.
Carla Walker was just 17 when she was abducted from a Fort Worth parking lot and murdered in February of 1974. This brutal crime remained unsolved for nearly a half-century, with all available leads exhausted, including conventional forensic DNA testing.
In April 2020, Carla’s story was featured on Oxygen’s “The DNA of Murder with Paul Holes.” Within weeks, Othram’s advanced DNA analysis paired with exceptional investigative work from the detectives led to the identification of a suspect.
The search for answers began in 1994 when a fisherman discovered a body in the lake. It’s likely that the Lake Stickney John Doe had been in the lake for as many as seven years before being discovered.
Despite having less than 0.2 nanograms (less than 20 cell’s worth) of badly degraded and heavily contaminated human DNA to work with, Othram’s scientists used Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing® and a combination of proprietary enrichment methods and sequencing protocols to reconstruct a genealogical profile.
The remains, found in 1979 in an agricultural field near Charleston, Missouri, had been burned prior to discovery. No identity could be established at that time and the remains were eventually turned over to Southeast Missouri State University (SEMO).
Dr. Bengtson and her team at SEMO sent a small sample of the remains to Othram in early 2020 in the hopes of solving this case while providing her students a valuable learning platform.
In August of 1979, one family hunting for arrowheads in the caves, instead turned up a headless, burlap wrapped male torso. The remains, which became known as the Buffalo Cave Torso, were examined by the FBI’s elite forensic team with no resulting identification, and also examined at the Smithsonian, again without an identification being made.
Othram’s laboratory digitized the degraded remains from this case using Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing®.
Let's solve your case
Forensic evidence will degrade over time. Don't lose your evidence or allow it to be consumed by inadequate testing. We work with forensic scientists, medical examiners, and law enforcement agencies to achieve results when other approaches failed. Reach out to learn how we can help you with your case.
My friends at Othram have helped solve another case. Awesome job by all involved! https://t.co/Lss4zfBSvk— Paul Holes (@PaulHoles) October 15, 2020