Anthropology: Current and Future Developments

Volume: 2

Genomics in Biological Anthropology: New Challenges, New Opportunities

Molecular methodologies are crucial to our understanding of human population diversity, as well as our evolutionary relationships with nonhuman primates. The completion of the Human Genome Project ...
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Complicities Between Forensic Anthropology and Forensic Genetics: New Opportunities for Genomics?

Pp. 206-218 (13)

Eugenia Cunha and Manuela Lima


Human genome projects have been generating a vast amount of data which is impacting several areas, and forensic anthropology is no exception. In this chapter the interrelation between forensic anthropology and forensic genetics is highlighted, and the potential role that genomics can have in forensic science is addressed. The main sub-areas to which forensic anthropology can call the expertise of forensic genetics are listed and discussed. Genome-wide studies have recently started to be used to generate data which can efficiently aid forensic anthropologists; noteworthy, epigenetic analysis has also demonstrated its potential of application to questions that are posed to forensic anthropology. We argue that the partnership between forensic anthropology and forensic genetics is essential for stepping further in forensic sciences and that recent genomic tools have the potential to efficiently resolve questions left unanswered by genetics.


Ancestry analysis, Forensic anthropology, Forensic genetics, Next generation sequencing, Positive identification, Sex diagnosis, Whole genome studies.


Laboratory of Forensic Anthropology, Department of Life Sciences, Centre of Functional Ecology, University of Coimbra, Calcada Martim de Freitas, 3000-456 Coimbra, Portugal.