Kelly Elkins


Kelly Elkins

Contact Info

Science Complex, Room 3301 F
1:00-2:30 Mondays & Tuesdays


B.A., Chemistry
Keene State College

B.S., Biology
Keene State College

M.A., Chemistry
Clark University

Ph.D., Chemistry
Clark University

Fulbright Scholar
European Media Laboratory (Heidelberg, Germany)

Postdoctoral Fellow

Areas of Expertise

DNA recovery
DNA typing using capillary electrophoresis and massively parallel sequencing
Development of species identification assays for food borne pathogens
Detection and analysis of new psychoactive substances and counterfeit drugs

Research Interests

After evaluating DNA recovery methods for simulated forensic samples for many years, my lab recently acquired the capability to apply next generation sequencing (NGS) to forensic samples using massively parallel sequencing (MPS).  My lab has begun using NGS to analyze DNA extracted from modern and historic period human remains.  My lab is evaluating whole genome amplification (WGA) techniques to improve DNA profile results and is developing new tools to aid in the analysis of the DNA sequence data.  My team aims to apply genetic genealogy to solve cold cases and help augment the historical record and provide closure to families.  My lab has also developed real-time PCR assays to probe individual single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) to aid in mitochondrial DNA haplotyping and multiplex PCR melt assays to detect and identify foodborne pathogens that have been used as bioterror agents and 'legal high' drug substances.