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Professor Loïc J. BLUM, Ph.D.

Director of the Enzymatic and Bio-molecular engineering Laboratory – C.N.R.S. 
(National Center of Scientific Research) 
University of Lyon - France

It is Loïc J. BLUM, a specialist in chemoluminescence at the University of Lyon, who has perfected the chemical formula of the BLUESTAR® FORENSIC in keeping with the requirements specification designed to provide practical assistance to forensic investigators.

The main activity at the Enzymatic and Bio-molecular Engineering Laboratory directed by BLUM concerns the study of enzymes and biomolecules in structured media. The biospecific molecular recognition, a unique property of some biomolecules (enzymes, antibodies, nucleic acids, lectins...), is exploited to develop sensing layers associated with signal transduction systems for the design of biosensors, i.e. enzyme electrodes, fiberoptic biosensors, immunosensors, sensorchips...

The chemoluminescence reaction of luminol has been exploited to design several oxidase-based optical biosensors for metabolites (glucose, lactate, cholesterol, choline) as well as immunosensors for sea-food toxins. The light emision was either catalysed by an immobilised peroxidase (HRP) or triggered by an electrochemical process.

For more elaborate information on the above topics, kindly consult the websites of the laboratory.

Philippe ESPERANÇA, M.S.

Member of the IABPA
International Association of Blood Pattern Analysts

Philippe Esperança is a specialist in morpho-analysis of blood traces. This particular discipline aims at determining the causes that have lead up to the bloodshed, thus to reconstruct the most likely scenario of acts of violence and to precisely define the part played by the protagonists in the incidents in question.

During his investigations, he has had to take recourse to current chemical techniques used for the detection of washed out blood traces. Each and every method employed imposes its own particular conditions for usage, conditions to which one needs to add for certain products the impossibility of determining a subsequent genotyping.

After having been subjected to a process of validity tests, the BLUESTAR® FORENSIC formula was selected from amongst other products since, beyond its ready utilization characteristics, it also allows the determination of subsequent genotyping.

As a concluding benefit, the chemoluminescent reactions produced by the BLUESTAR® FORENSIC formulation last much longer and are more intense, which facilitates their being photographed.

Philippe Esperança holds the M.S. degree "D.E.S.S. of crime-detection techniques" (Diploma of Specialized Studies in Criminology) from the University of Lyon, as well as a technical diploma of Criminal Police officer). He has on numerous occasions been called upon as a court expert by the Courts of First Instance.

UFEG - Nantes CHU - France

Functional Unit for Gene Specificity (UFEG)
University Hospital (CHU) - Nantes – France

For ten years running, the Functional Unit for Gene Specificity (UFEG), a department within the CHU in Nantes, has been engaged in the analysis of DNA samples for forensic purposes. These analyses result in the construction of genetic codes leading to the identification of individuals, starting with samples of unknown origin (traces) through comparison with the samples of known individuals (references).

The UFEG, under the direction of Doctor PASCAL (Court expert with the Court of Cassation), is made up of a team of 5 executive members (2 specialist evaluators: Dr. PASCAL & Dr. SCHLENCK, 1 support engineer, 1 quality engineer, and 1 coordinator), a pool of 6 secretaries and 10 technicians.

In 2003, UFEG put in place a System of Quality Management (SMQ) pursuant to the requirements of the ISO 9001: 2000, in order to develop, on solid foundations, a system intended to create an investigative spirit of even stricter discipline and quality (with particular emphasis on traceability) and offering all possible guarantees of reliability associated with the utilized techniques.

With this objective for certification in mind, the BLUESTAR® FORENSIC formulation, like every new product employed within the UFEG, was subjected to a validity test (cf. "chapter 7.4. : Purchases" of ISO 9001: 2000). This validity test was carried out under the supervision of Mrs. Stéphanie ROCQUEFELTE, Quality Engineer within the UFEG, with the collaboration of two technicians: Mrs. LAUNAY and Mr. AUFRAY.

This validity test has clearly demonstrated the capabilities of BLUESTAR® FORENSIC to meet the validation criteria as established by the UFEG. For our unit, one of the major requirements is the ability to achieve genotyping upon evidence of a stain following an orientation test. Consequently, the internal validity test has revealed that the sensitivity threshold of BLUESTAR® FORENSIC is superior to the sensitivity threshold of the genotyping.

Furthermore, the duration and the intensity of chemoluminescence of BLUESTAR® FORENSIC permit the detection and the localization of stains that are not readily visualized. In conclusion, BLUESTAR® FORENSIC allows the detection of blood on dark bearer backgrounds and on backgrounds that have been cleaned (surface areas where the blood is invisible to the naked eye) and generates but little reaction with the backgrounds.

It is on the strength of these criteria, and following its determinant role in a number of instances, that BLUESTAR® FORENSIC has been adopted as the routine orientation test employed by the offices of the UFEG.