Synthetic DNA spray to keep burglars at bayPublished On: Mon, Oct 25th, 2010 | Synthetic Biology | By BioNews
A new device that sprays burglars with synthetic DNA and allows police to track them down has been deployed in restaurants and offices in the UK.
That gadget called SelectaDNA Spray-a canister loaded with a harmless solution containing synthetic DNA-glows under ultraviolet light and can tie a burglar to a crime.
Andrew Knights, of SelectaDNA, said that the solution isn”t easy to remove.
“It will come off within a number of hand washes. But if you run through a spray it’ll accumulate on the inside of your nostrils and ears and under the fingernails; areas that are difficult to get off,” AOL News quoted him as saying.
However, the main aim of the SelectaDNA spray isn”t to capture criminals but to scare them away.
“Retailers are investing in this technology because they want to move the crime on somewhere else.
“They are just out to protect their property and staff,” said Knights.
Trials run by U.K. police together with SelectaDNA have shown that the technology-or at least, the presence of the technology-is an effective deterrent.
A shop owner Altaf Kazi is confident that the SelectaDNA spray has helped keep the robbers away.
“We are 100 yards away from the Co-op store [that was robbed in April], and there is a betting shop a few doors away [that was broken into in September].
“We are in the middle of those two shops and have been left alone. I am pretty sure that is to do with the DNA spray being in place and the sign in the window warning potential burglars that the system is operating,” he said. (