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Forensic Tools for Bioterrorism Events

Enterovirus D68 Genomic SequencingThe Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is investing in research and development of next generation and novel technologies to characterize biological and chemical threat agents for forensic source attribution.

The Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) will source solutions to support FBI and National Bioforensic Analysis Center (NBFAC) requirements in criminal investigations, and facilitate the effort to deter biological terrorism. These include novel technologies to characterize the organism, the agent, or the sample matrix.

The Bioforensics BAA seeks products and research in the following technical topic areas:

  • Increased specificity of molecular assays for the identification of pathogenic tularensis strains at the exclusion of near neighbors
  • Strategies to isolate and sequence near neighbors from environmental isolates
  • Development of advanced sample prep methods from complex biological samples
  • Advance non-biased isolation of DNA and RNA to support downstream analysis of whole genome sequencing platforms
  • Development of informatics and statistical tools needed to identify and characterize complex biological mixtures

DHS anticipates approximately $2.63 million will be available for proposal funding. Further details are available via Solicitation Number: HSHQDC14RB0009OBAA1400Call14.

Editor’s Note: The white paper deadline for this opportunity is Jan. 7th.

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