Othram in the news

Forensic genealogy to be used in deceased hiker case

Detectives have partnered with [Othram] to identify the man using a new technique in forensic genealogy and handles the process in-house. The partnership comes after detectives determined that they had exhausted DNA searches through national missing person’s databases in March of this year and following national developments in DNA privacy.

15 July, 2020

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Forensic Genomics Launching Fall 2020

Forensic Genomics, a dynamic new peer-reviewed journal, will launch its preview issue at the annual International Symposium on Human Identification (ISHI) in September 2020. The Journal will focus on the use of the latest DNA testing technologies, algorithms, artificial intelligence, and genealogical research methods to support human identification using inference tools and inductive reasoning.

13 May, 2020

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Leveraging Anthropology, Forensic Genomics, and Genealogy to Restore Identity to Human Remains

Advances in DNA testing and genetic genealogy have been steadily helping forensic professionals close a growing number of seemingly “unsolvable” cases.

1 May, 2020

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DNA Testing w/ David Mittelman (Part 2, audio)

In this episode, hosts Bill Thomas and Kristin Dilley discuss advanced forensic DNA testing with Dr. David Mittelman, founder and CEO of Othram in Houston, Texas.

27 April, 2020

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SEMO professor, students identify remains found on Charleston farm in 1979

After more than 40 years, an identification has been made in a cold case involving burned, unidentified human remains recovered on a farm near Charleston, Missouri. [...] Through modern DNA testing of the unidentified remains, a full genome sequence was produced by Othram Inc., a private DNA laboratory in Texas specializing in recovery, enrichment and analysis of human DNA from trace amounts of degraded or contaminated materials.

25 April, 2020

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New program in Houston is training future forensic scientists and digitizing DNA evidence

Houston-area's first-privately held forensic sequencing laboratory has partnered with The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center to create an academic program that will provide forensic training to genome scientists that will help them crack previously unsolved criminal cases.

21 April, 2020

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DNA Testing w/ David Mittelman (Part 1, audio)

In this episode, hosts Bill Thomas and Kristin Dilley discuss advanced forensic DNA testing with Dr. David Mittelman, founder and CEO of Othram in Houston, Texas.

20 April, 2020

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Forensic Genealogy: An Investigator’s Roadmap

This is an exciting time in the world of cold case investigations where advances in DNA testing are helping investigators break through previously impenetrable forensic DNA barriers. Investigators now have the chance to take new steps to solve cold cases that they just can’t let go—cases that were deemed unsolvable. The next question becomes, where do I begin?

16 April, 2020

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Othram Establishes Academic Program to Train Forensic Genomics Scientists

Othram, a forensic DNA sequencing laboratory for law enforcement, has announced a program agreement with The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and its School of Health Professions to provide training for Molecular Genetic Technology (MGT) graduate students in the field of forensic genomics. [...] The MGT program is a three-semester, highly intensive course of study offered by the School of Health Professions. This unique learning experience integrates classroom lectures, laboratory demonstrations and technical experience to prepare each student for national certification as a molecular genetic technologist.

6 April, 2020

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Your DNA Test Could Crack a Cold Case

DNASolves, a new database launched in November by Houston forensic genomics company Othram, was designed with these people in mind. Unlike GEDmatch and FamilyTreeDNA, the site is specifically meant to aid in criminal investigations. Unlike GEDmatch and FamilyTreeDNA, the site is specifically meant to aid in criminal investigations.

11 March, 2020

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DNA solves the oldest cold case (audio)

Idaho cave first discovered in 1979, but the body remained unidentified for 40 years. We were the lab that basically took the material and produced a genome sequence from it. The twist to the story is that we produced a genome sequence and then these two genealogists discovered that the body belonged to someone who is over 100 years old.

4 March, 2020

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Woodlands-Based Biotech Company is Helping Solve America’s Cold Cases

Othram uses advanced DNA sequencing and proprietary software to enable human identification applications from degraded and often scare forensic DNA evidence. The company has built the first and only private laboratory to apply the power of modern genome sequencing in a forensic environment.

14 February, 2020

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Southeast Missouri State University Anthropologist Partners with Othram for Identification of Human Remains

Othram, the leading forensic sequencing laboratory for law enforcement, is working with an anthropologist from Southeast Missouri State University to use forensic genealogy to help identify human remains found on a farm in Charleston, Missouri, in 1979.

14 February, 2020

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DNA testing underway on Portsmouth African Burying Ground remains

The City Council this week authorized the expenditure of up to $10,450 from the African Burying Ground Trust to conduct the DNA sequencing project, which is already underway in partnership with Othram, a Texas-based laboratory that applies cutting-edge genomics to forensics to deliver full genome insight from degraded and low-input DNA samples.

8 February, 2020

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Investigators asking people to volunteer DNA to help solve cold cases

Project: Cold Case, Forensic Genealogy and Southeastern Homicide Investigators Association (SHIA) are providing free DNA testing kits at its 5th annual Year of Hope fundraiser on Saturday. The group is asking for people to participate in the testing and upload their results to DNA solves or another public database for agencies to compare to DNA in unsolved cases. Several members of law enforcement are pledging to do the same.

23 January, 2020

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Your DNA Could Catch a Criminal

My close relatives aren’t criminals, I think, but who knows what my third cousins twice removed might be involved in? I’m happy to upload my DNA to a secure database and opt in for law-enforcement searches. You should be too. Privacy scolds should pipe down. The benefits of a safer society far outweigh the risks. With enough publicity, crimes that leave physical evidence, especially murder and rape, should become a lot less common.

12 January, 2020

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Forensic Genomics Market Advances Due to Consumer Databases, Technology Innovation

Othram, a new forensic genomics laboratory with in-house next-generation sequencing capabilities, introduced to solicit users of consumer genomics services to upload their data for the expressed desire to help law enforcement solve cold cases. "Family Tree DNA is doing the opt-out model [with regards to law enforcement], GEDmatch is doing opt-in," said Othram CEO David Mittelman. "I thought there should be another model," he said. "Since we do nothing but law enforcement, there is nothing to opt out of."

9 January, 2020

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DNA Evidence Identifies Headless Corpse in Cave as 1916 Axe Murderer

Researchers from the Texas-based Othram Inc. lab managed to extract genetic material from one of the leg bones—so remarkably preserved that an accompanying sock remained intact—and uploaded a DNA profile to several databases to search for a match. Within months, they had their man.

7 January, 2020

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103-year-old murder case cracked after headless torso found in Idaho cave

As the years went on, improved technology uncovered some details about the body, such as a relative age and height. But without a head, the case went cold — until last year. Authorities in Clark County, Idaho, turned to the DNA Doe Project and experts from Othram, a tech company that sequences DNA. Genealogists then built a “genealogical tree,” which led to a huge breakthrough.

1 January, 2020

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Headless Torso Found in Idaho Cave Identified as Bootlegger

The headless torso that was found in a remote Idaho cave 40 years ago has finally been identified as belonging to an outlaw who killed his wife with an ax and was last seen after escaping from jail in 1916. [...] Experts from Othram, a technology company focused on forensic DNA sequencing, analyzed a sample taken from the remains.

31 December, 2019

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The Woodlands-based Othram applies DNA sequencing to aid investigations

So he raised $4 million in venture capital in November 2018 to build Othram’s lab and buy equipment for DNA extraction and sequencing, opening the lab in April. Othram’s customers, mostly law enforcement, pay for the company’s DNA extraction and sequencing services.

27 December, 2019

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We’re Entering a New Phase in Law Enforcement’s Use of Consumer Genetic Data

While not the first time the technique was used, the Golden State Killer investigation was certainly the highest-profile, and it opened the floodgates to solving crimes with genetic genealogy. Law enforcement simply input DNA from unsolved cases into GEDmatch (as well as some other databases, like FamilyTreeDNA and Othram). When crime scene DNA demonstrates even a partial match, forensic genealogists can use that information to construct a family tree and determine who a suspect might be.

19 December, 2019

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Othram Launches Forensic Genealogy Service for Law Enforcement

Othram announced the formation of an in-house forensic genealogy research team, including Anthony Lukas Redgrave and Lee Bingham Redgrave, pioneers in the emerging field of forensic genetic genealogy. This team, along with data scientists and software developers, completes Othram’s full-service forensic DNA sequencing program enabling law enforcement agencies to work with a single vendor to extract, enrich, test, and analyze DNA not amenable to other approaches.

19 October, 2019

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The Genomics of Justice (audio)

David explains his vision for disrupting the state of the art in forensics identification using genomics, deep sequencing and machine learning.

10 October, 2019

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Othram Aims to Overcome DNA Sequencing Challenges to Solve Forensic Crime Cases

Othram combines unique laboratory processes with our own software algorithms, to identify and eliminate noise so that we can better identify genetic data that truly corresponds to a DNA sample. We use this data to help our customers learn more about the identity of unknown persons and the circumstances in which their remains were found.

11 June, 2019

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Othram Awarded Research Sequencing Grant At SXSW By Illumina Accelerator

Othram was awarded a research sequencing grant from Illumina Accelerator after presenting at SXSW for the "Digitizing Biology Through Genomics" session as part of the Energizing Health House program. Founded in 2018, Othram is a new technology company that operates a state-of-the-art forensic DNA sequencing laboratory, focusing on reconstructing genome sequences from degraded and low-input DNA sources.

15 April, 2019

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Forensic Genomics Firm Othram Raises $4M

Forensic genomics startup Othram said today that it has raised $4 million in Series A financing. Nimble Ventures, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm, led the round.

12 March, 2019

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