Center for DNA Identification under the Institute of Biotechnology put into operation

On July 25th, in Hanoi, the Institute of Biotechnology under Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology (VAST) held a ceremony to open the Center for DNA Identification.

This completed the project on upgrading the center for DNA identification for missing-information fallen soldiers’ remains at the Institute of Biotechnology.

In early 2013, the Prime Minister approved Project 150 on determining missing-information fallen soldiers" remains. Accordingly, the Institute of Biotechnology is one of the three key units assigned to analyse DNA to identify the fallen soldiers" remains, along with the Military Institute of Forensic Medicine under the Ministry of Defense and the Institute of Forensic Sciences under the Ministry of Public Security.

Earlier, in the 2000s, the Institute of Biotechnology began to use DNA in analyzing and assessing the remains of fallen soldiers at an experimental scale of about 30 samples per year. From this pioneering step, the Institute of Biotechnology became the first unit in Vietnam to successfully build a technological process of DNA analysis of fallen soldiers and transferred technology to other expert units.

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam, President of VAST, Prof. Acad. Chau Van Minh and representatives of ministries and committees at the opening ceremony of Center for DNA Identification

In July 2019, the Institute of Biotechnology completed the project on upgrading the center for DNA identification for missing-information fallen soldiers’ remains at the Institute of Biotechnology to ensure the capacity of analyzing 4,000 fallen soldiers’ remains every year. The project consists of a combination of 10 clean rooms with functions to handle the remains and samples of relatives and laboratories for research and development, sample storage areas, testing area, server system and office system on 750m2 area at Co Nhue Technology Research and Development Zone under VAST.

The entire laboratory complex has been put into operation from July 2019. Its personnel scale and number of analytical samples will increase in 2020. The Center aims to become a nuclear unit of DNA extraction and analysis technology transmitted from perennial bone samples and ancient bone specimens. It also aims to be an international human resource training center in genetics and individual genetic testing.

Prof. Acad. Chau Van Minh, VAST President, said that the center inauguration would contribute to the more effective assessment of fallen soldiers" remains. VAST, the Institute of Biotechnology as well as the center will be determined to carry out the task to meet the aspirations of the Party, the Government and the people on identifying unidentified fallen soldiers’ remains. This showed gratitude for fallen soldiers’ sacrifice for the fatherland.

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam visits the center

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam wished leaders of VAST and the Institute of Biotechnology and relevant units to create favourable conditions for experts and researchers, especially young civil servants, to quickly access equipment, modern technology and latest research in the field of DNA assessment.

He also asked the center to perform task of assessing fallen soldiers" remains and actively explore new development, research and application in the field of gene assessment, catch up DNA assessment in advanced countries, serving scientific, technological, economic and social activities.

Following are photos at the Center in Co Nhue:

Center for DNA Identification.

Handling the remains of samples

Sample analysis

Electrophoresis of PCR products

Ion PGM new generation gene sequencing system

PACBIO SEQUEL third generation sequencing system

Translated by Tuyet Nhung
Link to Vietnamese version

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