Stolorow, Mark

views updated May 18 2018

Stolorow, Mark


From about the last quarter of the twentieth century to the present, Mark D. Stolorow has provided extensive experience as both a forensic serologist and a forensic laboratory administrator. Because of these qualifications, Stolorow serves as an expert witness in numerous court cases involving forensic science . Earlier in his professional career, Stolorow was credited, along with Brian Wraxall , with developing the multisystem method for simultaneously testing isoenzyme systems in 1978. That same year, Stolorow and Wraxall were also recognized as being the first to develop methods for typing blood serum proteins. Today, Stolorow is the executive director of Orchid Cellmark, an internationally recognized leader in providing forensic DNA analytical services to law enforcement agencies, lawyers, detectives and investigators, companies, and individuals, and in developing new methods to use DNA testing.

Stolorow gained his bachelor's of science degree from the University of Michigan and his master's of science degree in forensic chemistry from the University of Pittsburgh. He also earned his master's of business administration degree in management from Eastern Michigan University. After graduation, Stolorow was employed as a training coordinator for the state forensic serology program in Illinois. Later, he was the research program administrator at the Bureau of Forensic Sciences for the Illinois State Police.

After working with the Illinois Police, Stolorow joined Cellmark Diagnosticsa subsidiary of Life-codes Corporationas a general manager. When Orchid Biosciences acquired Cellmark Diagnostics in December 2001, Stolorow became the executive director of Orchid Cellmark, located in Germantown, Maryland, the forensic strategic business unit. Stolorow has the responsibility of directing Orchid Cell-mark's international network of forensic testing laboratories, which are based in England and the United States. Stolorow and his employees have worked with many of the major U.S. police departments in such cities as New York City, Chicago, and Houston. They have also helped many international law enforcement agencies, including Scotland Yard and the Metropolitan Police Service in London, England. Stolorow has helped to build Orchid Cellmark into the largest independent supplier of DNA analysis services to English police departments, the world's leading country in forensic DNA testing.

Along with fellow Orchid forensic scientists, Stolorow has played important roles in conducting DNA testing for such high-profile cases as the 1995 criminal investigation of O.J. Simpson for the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman; the 1998 murder trial of Theodore Kaczynski (the Unabomber); the 1996 murder case of JonBenet Ramsey in Boulder, Colorado; the 2002 trial of David Westerfield, the murderer/kidnapper of Danielle van Dam of San Diego, California; and the 19821984 homicide investigation and serial murder trial of Gary Ridgway (Green River murderer) near Seattle, Washington. In fact, Stolorow presented the DNA evidence from the O.J. Simpson case to representatives of the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C., because the case heralded the importance of DNA evidence in crime investigations and courtroom proceedings.

For the identification of the 911 victims at the World Trade Center in New York City, traditional DNA methods often failed because the crucial genetic materials had been severely degraded by compressed building materials , bacterial contamination, high temperatures, and water. Fortunately, Stolorow was able to coordinate the development of innovative technologies that were able to overcome these difficulties. This new forensic technologycalled single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markershelped to identify the damaged DNA material found at the disaster site. By using SNP technology, Stolorow and the Orchid scientists were able to identify many more victims that were previously unidentified. Because of their pioneering SNP work with large-scale forensic DNA analysis, Stolorow and his team of scientists are exploring further uses of SNP tests in other difficult medical and scientific cases.

In 2003, Stolorow launched the DNA Express Service, a premium forensic DNA testing service by Orchid Cellmark that is used to help local U.S. law enforcement agencies analyze the estimated 500,000 backlogged cases of DNA evidence from unsolved "no-suspect" and other criminal crimes. Stolorow and his team of forensic scientists deliver DNA results in five business days as compared to the standard four to five weeks for routine casework. In the future, Stolorow intends to make DNA Express Service a key resource for providing quick, but accurate, DNA analysis of criminal cases.

Stolorow is also involved in providing increased DNA testing services that became available when the new law Justice for All Act of 2004 was signed by President George W. Bush. The legislation is providing about $1 billion between 2004 and 2009 in order to eliminate the backlog of unanalyzed DNA evidence in police departments across the country and to expand the FBI's Combined DNA Index System (CODIS ). Stolorow is guiding Orchid Cellmark as a key partner with law enforcement organizations by reducing the DNA backlog, increasing the use of forensic testing, and adding more criminal information to the federal CODIS database. Stolorow has already coordinated Orchid Cellmark's work to implement Biotracks, a pilot program with the New York Police Department to solve burglaries by matching DNA crime samples to DNA databases of convicted criminals.

see also American Academy of Forensic Sciences; DNA; DNA recognition instruments; DNA sequences, unique; Genetic code; Multisystem method; September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks (forensic investigations of); Simpson (O. J.) murder trial; Unabomber case and trial; September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks (forensic investigations of).

Wraxall, Brian

views updated May 23 2018

Wraxall, Brian


Forensic serologist Brian G.D. Wraxall is widely recognized as the co-developer in 1966, along with Brian J. Culliford, of the immunoelectrophoretic technique for haptoglobin typing in bloodstains. Wraxall is also credited, along with Mark Stolorow , with developing the multisystem method for the parallel testing of isoenzyme systems in 1978. During that same year, the team of Wraxall and Stolorow were also recognized as the first forensic scientists to develop methods for typing blood serum proteins. Currently, Wraxall is the executive director of the Serological Research Institute in California, a company that provides consultation, laboratory analysis, and court testimony to the forensic science community.

Wraxall grew up in England during the middle part of the twentieth century where from 1958 to 1962 he attended King Edward VI Grammar School in the town of Totnes in Devon County. (The school later became known as King Edward VI College.) Even at this young age, Wraxall was interested in biology and chemistry, receiving school certificates in both subjects. Beginning in 1962, he worked as a laboratory chemist for Western Countries Brick Company in Torquay, Devon, and later as a senior scientific officer for the Metropolitan Police Laboratory in London, England. During this twelve-year period, Wraxall specialized in serology , where he delved into the research and development of electrophoresis methods that specifically involved blood enzymes and proteins in body fluids and bloodstains. In 1966, Wraxall and Culliford developed a technique of immunoelectrophoresis for haptoglobin typing in bloodstains. At this time, Wraxall and Culliford published the paper "Haptoglobin Types in Dried Bloodstains" in Nature, which was followed by additional scientific papers over the next few years.

In 1969, Wraxall received a higher national certificate in applied biologyspecializing in biochemistry, microbiology, and physiologyfrom the Borough Polytechnic College in London, England. Eight years later, in 1977, Wraxall began working as a consultant for the Bloodstain Analysis project (funded by the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration) for Beckman Instruments and The Aerospace Corporation. One year later, Wraxall and Stolorow developed a Bloodstain Analysis System (BAS), or the multisystem method, for simultaneously testing generic (identification ) markerssuch as ACP1 (acid phosphatase 1, soluble), ADA (adenosine deaminase), AK (adenylate kinase), EsD (esterase D), GloI (glyoxalase I), and PGM (phosphoglucomutase)using one of three different electrophoretic trials. The BAS method resulted in the efficient identification of genetic characteristics (or phenotypes) of organisms with respect to their environment when only a very small amount of materials are available as evidence in criminal cases. As a result, Wraxall introduced, along with other scientists, the paper "Final Report: Bloodstain Analysis System" (The Aerospace Corporation, September 1978).

At this same time, Wraxall and Stolorow also developed methods for typing blood serum proteins such as Hp (haptoglobin) and Gc (glycoprotein C). As a result, the pair published the paper "An Efficient Method to Eliminate Streaking in the Electrophoretic Analysis of Haptoglobin in Bloodstains" in the Journal of Forensic Science.

In 1978, Wraxall became employed for the Serological Research Institute (SERI) located in Richmond, California, first as a technical leader and later as its chief forensic serologist. SERI is a non-for-profit corporation that has served the legal and forensic sciences communities since 1978 with a number of support services. Wraxall is currently the executive director of the Serological Research Institute, where he coordinates the work of providing forensic, serological, and DNA analysis services. During his years with SERI he has taught various training courses that involve: identification and typing of biological evidence in such specific topics as bloodstain analysis; electrophoresis; semen identification and analysis; genotyping of immunoglobulins (Ig), heavy chain (GM) and light chain (KM) allotypes; and DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) typing.

Also while employed with SERI, Wraxall attended the University of California at Berkeley where he studied molecular biology in 1990. Later, in 2002, Wraxall graduated from Hamilton Universitylocated in Evanston, Wyomingwith a bachelor's of science degree in biological sciences.

For most of his professional career, Wraxall has worked as a consultant with respect to expert testimony for both the prosecution and the defense sides of courtroom cases involving both civil and criminal matters. In preparation for these court cases and in direct testimony during these cases, Wraxall lent his proficiency in forensic serology throughout various U.S. courts involving the examination and explanation of biological evidence. His expertise covers a broad range of case material involving the presence of trace evidence such as the phenotyping of bloodstains in polymorphic systems (involving antigens, enzymes, and proteins); the phenotyping of stains of body fluids; and the extraction and analysis of DNA from hairs, bodily fluids, and skeletal materials.

Wraxall has published numerous scientific papers from 1967 to the present day including "Use of Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) to Measure Semen Exposure Resulting from Male Condom Failures: Implications for Contraceptive Efficacy and the Prevention of Sexually Transmitted Disease" in Contraception (2003). He has also presented various papers throughout his career including "Advances on DNA in Forensic Testing" for the Legal Secretaries 2nd Quarterly Conference (Modesto, California, 2003) and "Roles of Markers in Forensics" for the Evaluation of Markers of Intercourse in Trials of Vaginal Barriers (Conrad, Washington, D.C., 2003).

see also Bloodstain evidence; DNA; DNA sequences, unique; Mitochondrial DNA analysis; Mitochondrial DNA typing; Multisystem method; Paternity evidence; RFLP (restriction fragment length polymorphism).