Twenty-five years ago academic Alec Jeffreys stumbled on a remarkable discovery. The scientific breakthrough led to DNA fingerprinting - which has since trapped hundreds of killers, freed the innocent and revolutionised science and criminal justiceOn 10 September 1984, geneticist Alec Jeffreys wrote three words - "33 autorad off" - in his red desk diary. The phrase marked the completion of an experiment, set up that summer, to study how inherited illnesses pass through families. It failed completely.Yet the project remains one of the most profoundly influential pieces of research ever carried out in a British laboratory, for it produced the world's first DNA fingerprint, a technology that has revolutionised crime scene investigations, led to the convictions of murderers and rapists, and transformed immigration disputes and paternity cases.Twenty-five years ago the idea that scientists would one day be able to pinpoint an individual from the tiniest trace of their sweat or...
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