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Can New Technology Put a Dent in the Rape Kit Backlog?

This story is my first for Undark, a publication I have long admired and hoped to contribute to. I found the story after I noticed a flurry of research papers focused on rape kit forensics. I have a Google Alert for certain keywords like "sperm," and I kept getting DNA analysis hits, so I wondered if there was a reason for the apparent uptick in work. It turned out that there was an upward trend, and I learned that this trend was at least in part the result of increased attention to and funding for the current backlog of rape kits in the US. Much thanks goes to my editor who put in much time helping me work this story into its final form.

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