Microbial forensics

S. Schmedes, B. Budowle

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Biothreats are a high priority concern for public safety and national security. The field of microbial forensics was developed to analyze evidence associated with biological crimes in which microbes or their toxins are used as weapons. Microbial forensics is the scientific discipline dedicated to analyzing evidence from a bioterrorism act, biocrime, hoax, or inadvertent microorganism/toxin release for attribution purposes. Microbial forensics combines the practices of epidemiology with the characterization of microbial and microbial-related evidence to assist in determining the specific source of the sample, as individualizing as possible, and/or the methods, means, processes and locations involved to determine the identity of the perpetrator(s) of an attack.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Microbiology
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9780128117378
ISBN (Print)9780128117361
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2019


  • Attribution
  • Bacteria
  • Biocrime
  • Bioterrorism
  • Epidemiology
  • Genetic typing
  • Massively parallel sequencing
  • Metagenomics
  • Microbial forensics
  • Synthetic biology
  • Toxins
  • Viruses


Dive into the research topics of 'Microbial forensics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this