Forensic Medicine and Pathology

Forensic Lab and Pathology

Forensic medicine includes the collection and analysis of medical evidence and forensic toxicology to consider the cause of death or injury. In forensic pathology you examine post-mortem the range of sudden and unexpected deaths, estimate the time of death, determine the type of weapon used, distinguish homicide from suicide and establish the identity of the deceased. Forensic analysis and pathology cover a wide range of applications from histology, anthropology, toxicology to DNA analysis. Microscopy plays a significant role in forensic labs which execute these tasks.

DNA analysis in Sexual Assault Cases

As a forensic scientist examining sexual assault cases, you want to obtain a meaningful DNA profile of the perpetrator based on the traces found at the victim. When you examine vaginal swabs taken from the victim, you are faced with samples of cell mixtures, which are tedious to analyze. Furthermore, only small amounts of sperm cells might be present. Often, differential extraction is used to separate epithelial cells from sperm cells. However, the procedure is labor-intense, time consuming and leads to moderate success rates in subsequent genetic fingerprinting. Laser microdissection from ZEISS offers a convenient and effective way to identify and isolate individual cells reliably and fast providing the basis for pure DNA profiles.

Forensic Pathology & Forensic Toxicology

As forensic pathologist, you want to determine how and why someone died. You investigate the cause of death and if it was an accident, a natural cause, murder or suicide. The autopsy generally starts with a macroscopic observation of the body before internal organs are examined. Especially in cases of sudden death, you need to look at histopathological sections with a light or electron microscope to e.g. rule out poisoning, determine wound age, or check for long-term drug abuse.

Recommended Products for the Forensic Lab and Pathology

ZEISS Axio Zoom.V16

With the fluorescence zoom microscope Axio Zoom.V16 you combine fluorescence observation with large fields of view and three-dimensional images. Add the semiautomatic aureka microsampling platform, the 6x stage top holder and the 6x slide tube insert to isolate individual cells from a mixture and transfer them to tubes. You can even work from textiles or glass.


ZEISS Axio Scope.A1

The light microscope Axio Scope.A1 is your primary tool in assisting patho- logical examinations. Central to the examination of tissue samples and body fluids, a wide range of histological stains is used. Similarly, fluorescent dyes and immunohistochemical labels can also be used to target specific proteins, carbohydrates and lipids. With Axio Scope.A1 you profit from strain-free optics and a wide range of contrasting techniques to identify particular cell components and abnormal cell and tissue morphology. The light microscope is comfortable to use when viewing many slides throughout the day.



With the laser microdissection system PALM MicroBeam from ZEISS you can isolate pure samples from complex cell mixtures. Precise identification andisolation with our patented contamination-free laser transport technique allows you to obtain the homogenous sample material necessary for meaningful forensic results. With LCM from ZEISS you can even work from standard glass slides, enabling you to examine archived slides.

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