Agilent in Forensics

You might have seen Agilent equipment in episodes of “CSI,” the television series about crime scene investigators.  Our products play an important role in real life forensics, providing law enforcement agencies with solid clues in catching criminals, solving crimes, and keeping the world’s top-performing athletes honest.

Drug enforcement agencies around the world want to identify and stop illicit drug trafficking.  Forensic examination of the chemical composition can reveal a lot about where a drug came from and who produced and sold it.  The Agilent Q-TOF Gas Chromatograph/Mass Spectrometer (GC/MS) is particularly adept at characterizing complex mixtures that make up street heroin.  Agilent’s Mass Profiler Professional software helps law enforcement agencies map points of origin for street heroin, and even identify the criminal organization that distributed it.

Forensic evidence is also needed after an arrest, to provide legally defensible data strong enough to gain a conviction.  The Agilent GC/MS can provide a definitive chemical “fingerprint” for chemical-toxicological applications, and is considered the gold standard for law enforcement.  Agilent also provides application kits, drug libraries and databases for compound identification.

For the past 35 years, Agilent has developed a strong reputation in analytical instruments and methods for drug testing in sports.  Agilent has supplied drug-testing labs serving each of the Olympic Games since 1972, as well as current sporting events including World Cup Soccer and the Tour de France.  The Agilent Triple Quadrupole GC/MS provides the highest-sensitivity detection of more than 120 prohibited substances, requiring only a 1 ml sample of urine.

DNA analysis is another important technology in forensics.  Agilent contributes to an area of DNA forensics known as mitotyping, which uses mitochondrial DNA (mt-DNA) to trace maternal ancestry.  The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation’s standard protocol for mt-DNA analysis requires the use of an Agilent Bioanalyzer system.

Agilent’s customer markets include energy and chemicals, food, the environment, forensics, pharmaceuticals, research and diagnostics.


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