Progress report 1998

Summary

The consortium was structured according to the project programme. Two meetings were held. The kick-off meeting was in Rome (Italy) on the 17th of January and the second meeting in Innsbruck (Austria) on the 13th of June.

Working groups were set up, managers of the working groups elected and the laboratories included in the corresponding working group packages. Specific roles were assigned to each partner.
Criteria for the selection of DNA profiling systems leading to the establishment of a coordinated approach throughout Europe were established by WP1 and approved by the group. This includes accuracy of analysis, robustness of systems, cost of reagents and equipment, speed of analysis, compatibility between labs and the ability to transfer the same to new systems in the future.
Four exercises were proposed to the group by WP2 and accepted by the consortium. The topics of the current exercises are:

  1. Pentameric STR systems
  2. Efficiency of STR typing from artificially degraded DNA
  3. Y-chromosomal STR systems
  4. Mitochondrial DNA typing by enhanced mutation detection
The exercises are currently being carried out and they are coordinated by different members of the consortium.
Exchange of personnel between labs in the consortium according to WP3 started with six applications for secondments on mitochondrial DNA analysis.
A compilation of frequencies is currently being performed by members of WP4, starting by collecting data of commonly used short tandem repeat systems (STRs) for European populations.

Collaboration with companies for the evaluation of new technologies and for the promotion of common standards is ongoing, with the active support of the most important companies in the field. In addition to the associate companies in the project Amersham-Pharmacia Biotech and Perkin-Elmer) a third company called Promega was invited to attend the second meeting.