Combined DNA Index System
The CODIS Unit maintains and administers the local CODIS database at the University of North Texas Center for Human Identification (UNTCHI). CODIS is the acronym for the Combined DNA Index System, the FBI’s program of support for criminal justice DNA databases as well as the software used to run these databases. CODIS merges forensic science and computer technology into a tool for linking crimes and persons, and enables federal, state, and local CODIS participating laboratories to exchange and compare DNA profiles electronically.
UNTCHI has current ownership of over half of the specimens residing in the national CODIS missing persons indices (relatives of missing persons and unidentified remains profiles) and pedigree tree index where DNA associations help to identify missing and unidentified individuals from across the nation. UNTCHI has also uploaded DNA profiles from forensic casework including sexual assault backlog casework, robberies and thefts, and homicides, leading to the generation of countless investigative leads for law enforcement agencies.
The DNA Identification Act of 1994 formalized the FBI’s authority to establish a National DNA Index System (NDIS) for law enforcement purposes. The DNA Act specifies the categories of data that may be maintained in NDIS (convicted offenders, arrestees, legal, detainees, forensic [casework evidence], unidentified human remains, missing persons, and relatives of missing persons) as well as requirements for participating laboratories relating to quality assurance, privacy, and expungement. Currently, DNA data generated through PCR Short Tandem Repeat (STR) technology, Y chromosome STR (Y STR) technology, and Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) technology are accepted in CODIS. Y STR and mtDNA data are only searched within the missing person-related indexes.
In 2003 Texas Senate Bill 1304 established the Texas Missing Persons DNA Database (TMPDD) and directed that it be housed at the University of North Texas Health Science Center.
There are over 190 CODIS participating public law enforcement laboratories across the United States. These include all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the federal government, the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Laboratory, and Puerto Rico.
Internationally, more than 90 law enforcement laboratories in over 50 countries use the CODIS software for their own database initiatives. These databases do not connect or interact with the US CODIS databases.
Melody Josserand | CODIS Administrator
Chris Larsen | Senior Forensic Analyst
Lisa Sansom | Senior Forensic Analyst