Fingerprints, revisited

For more than a century, forensic scientists have linked criminals to crime scenes through the distinctive loops and whorls on their fingertips. But now, researchers are moving beyond simple pattern comparisons to glean more information from fingerprints. According to an article in Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), the weekly newsmagazine of the American Chemical Society, chemical analysis and DNA techniques could help identify criminals whose prints are too smudged to make a visual match.

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