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Physical Sciences: Firearms
Unit & Documents Unit

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Past & Present Research Partners
 microscopic examination of hair & fibre WHAT WE DO

The CFS engages in Research & Development to ensure that cutting edge forensic science is used to deliver services to official investigative agencies and to advance the discipline.

We seek to continuously improve the efficiency and effectiveness of our forensic analyses and examinations.

Our focus is on transformative technologies and on enhancing the objective nature of our work.

Click on "About Us" to learn more.


The CFS seeks to develop research collaboration with academic institutions, other Ontario Ministries and industry partners who have capacity and expertise to deliver research projects that align with our research priorities.

We may have human and material resources available to contribute to projects that support our research mandate.

Click on
"Become a Research Partner" link to learn more.
breath alcohol instrument testing
hit & run examination

Home / Become a Research Partner


There are two ways to enter into a research partnership with the CFS:

1. Express interest in a posted proposal by copying the project title into the partnership survey, then completing and submitting the survey. Unassigned CFS research proposals will be posted for at least 30 days to allow partners to express interest in a research collaboration. CFS will evaluate submissions and select the partner best suited to each specific collaboration.

2. Submit your own research proposal by clicking this link and completing the research partner proposal survey. Such proposals should align with the CFS research priorities outlined below. The CFS R&D Unit will review all such proposals with CFS Section management and/or staff to identify interest and capacity in the proposed collaboration.
case evidence processing

Home / Biology


1.   Study and better understand the factors which influence the transfer and persistence of biological fluids and DNA, so that we can better answer questions with respect to how and when the trace evidence came to be deposited, and not just who it may have originated from.

2.   To better understand population structures in the province of Ontario. In particular, to determine allele frequencies in major populations for a variety of autosomal markers of forensic significance, whether Short Tandem Repeat (STR) loci or Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) loci. In addition, to determine frequencies for relevant lineage marker haplotypes from the Y-chromosome and from the mitochondrial genome, in the same major populations.

automated DNA analysis
Biology Projects
Click on the project title link(s) below to see individual project details

Project TitleDate PostedCFS Project LeadPartner AgencyAgency LeadStatus
Transfer & persistence of semen-stained garments prior to laundering 14-02-2019Tricia MillerUniversity of Toronto at MississaugaDr. Nicole NovroskiAssigned
Isolate genomic DNA from rootless hair shaft samples. 25-03-2019Tara BrutzkiTrent UniversityDr. Christopher Kyle & Dr. Mike DonaldsonAssigned
Transfer & persistence of oral DNA 16-07-2019Tricia Miller  Available
To analyze transfer and persistence of DNA trace evidence between two pieces of fabric 01-08-2019Nicole VachonTrent UniversityDr. Sanela MarticAssigned
Study Transfer and Persistence of DNA from wet, dry or rehydrated bodily fluid stains on porous and non-porous surfaces. 01-10-2019Joanne Cox  Available
Assess the value of DNA evidence in Property Crimes during both the police investigations and the during the court litigation process. 01-10-2019Nicole Vachon  Available
Study transfer and persistence of DNA deposited onto face, neck and chest surfaces while people are talking in close proximity. 07-10-2019Wendy Lalonde and James Morrow  Available
Can DNA deposited on fabric, as a result of a touch or more vigorous action (e.g. grabbing), be localized and differentiated from DNA deposited through normal wear of the clothing item? 10-10-2019Fran Muller & Michelle Tremblay  Available
Study transfer and persistence of DNA deposited on the body during sexual activities, which are followed by bathing or showering 16-10-2019Camilla Sewhdat  Available
Study the transfer and persistence of DNA from habitually worn clothing relative to the most recent wearer of an item 28-10-2019Renata DziakOntario Tech UniversityStacey Sainte-MariePending
To determine whether Imaging Flow Cytometry (IFC) can be used to identify body fluids and body sources of epithelium on forensically relevant items and inform DNA mixture analysis, activity level reporting and point of crime evidence collection. 02-12-2019Sonja Stadler & Cory Steinberg Virginia Commonwealth UniversityDr. Christopher EhrhardtAssigned

Home / Chemistry


1. Study and better understand the factors which influence the transfer and persistence of trace evidence, so that we can better answer questions with respect to how and when the trace evidence came to be deposited, and not just suggest the potential source of the trace evidence.

2. Develop new methods to characterise trace evidence using Raman spectroscopy and time of flight mass spectrometry.

3. Develop new, and expand existing, trace evidence reference collections. This involves the collection and analysis of trace evidence exemplars with the goal of enhancing the objectivity of comparisons made between reference material and case material. Our initial focus will be on automotive carpet fibres, architectural paints, zip ties, plastic bags and adhesive tapes.

Raman microscopy
Chemistry Projects
Click on the project title link(s) below to see individual project details.

Project TitleDate PostedCFS Project LeadPartner AgencyPartner Project LeadStatus
Creation of an automotive carpet fibre database 19-10-2020Christine McCarthyOntario Technical UniversityKimberly Nugent & Dr. Cecilia HagemanAssigned
Can gasoline be cross-transferred between sealed mason jars used to store fire-debris material and if so, will the cross-transfer have an impact on the validity of the subsequent forensic analysis? 08-01-2021Cara Shepard  Available
Does hair combing produce scalp hairs that appear to have been forcibly removed? 29-01-2021Christine McCarthy  Available
Cable-Tie Study: Variability, discriminating power and evidential value 24-02-2021Gerri Lynn Vardy  Available
To examine the contribution chemical/physical trace evidence makes to in the Ontario Criminal Justice System 07-04-2021Dalia Bagby  Available
Development of a method for the detection of drugs in non-biological matrices by liquid chromatography quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (LC-QTOF-MS). 08-04-2021Hendrik Dorn, Mike Harrison, Rachel Chen  Available
Transfer & Persistence of GSR between fabrics 13-04-2021Dr. David RuddellTrent UniversityDr. Sanela MarticPending

Home / Physical Sciences: Firearms Unit & Documents Unit


1. Enhance the objectivity of firearms and ammunition examinations and comparisons.

2. Enhance the objectivity of handwriting analysis and comparisons.

microscopic examination of bullet
Physical Sciences Project Proposals
Click on the project title link(s) below to see individual project details.

Project TitleDate PostedCFS Project LeadPartner AgencyPartner Project LeadStatus
3D laser imaging of bullet trajectory 03-12-2018Judy ChinAI2-3D ForensicsEugene LiscioAssigned
Evaluation of General Rifling Characteristics 14-02-2019Paula Webster  Available

Home / Toxicology


1. Review CFS case data to evaluate and publish trends in the following areas.
    a. Alcohol and / or drug impaired driving.

    b. The role of drugs, other than alcohol, in fatal motor vehicle collisions.

    c. Investigations of individuals who have died while in custody and the
        death is opioid-related.

2. Develop or expand data sets to inform interpretation of toxicological fidings in
    forensic casework.

LC/MS drug analysis
Toxicology Project Proposals

Click on the project title link(s) below to see individual project details.

Project TitleDate PostedCFS Project LeadPartner AgencyPartner Project LeadStatus
Published in Cannabis, alcohol and other drug findings in fatally injured drivers in Ontario, Traffic Injury Prevention, (2020) Volume 22, Issue 1, pp. 1-6. 07-01-2019Dr. Amy PeaireCanadian Centre on Substance Use and AddictionDr. Douglas BeirnessArchived
Investigation of blood opioid concentrations in individuals suffering from severe chronic pain 23-05-2019Celeste Owen  Available
Absorption of drugs by gel separator in plasma samples stored in gel separator tubes 13-05-2020Cara Shepard & Liora BliumkinInternally-conducted researchnullAssigned
Review of Toxicology drug findings in sexual assault casework over a 5-year period 29-09-2020Patricia SolbeckUTMDr. Karen WoodallAssigned
Drug use among Automobile drivers in Ontario - 2018 to 2020 data 29-09-2020Dr. Amy PeaireCanadian Centre on Substance Use and AddictionDr. Douglas BeirnessAssigned

Home / CFS-Wide research


1. Review and publish data sets associated with method validations for all operational sections.

2. Review, evaluate and publish historical case data relevant to public safety.

3. Develop tools to measure the evidentiary value of forensic science investigations to clients and stakeholders (e.g. police, legal counsel, court system, etc.)
extraction of drugs from blood
CFS-Wide Project Proposals 

Click on the project title link(s) below to see individual project details.

Project TitleDate PostedCFS Project LeadPartner AgencyPartner Project LeadStatus
Study of the effects of providing scientific expert witness testimony remotely versus in-person in Ontario courts: effectiveness, cost and efficiency. 22-10-2020Dr. Amy Peaire & Janice HellmanTrent University and Ontario Tech UniversityRhonda Smith (Trent U) & Dr. Cecilia Hageman (OTU)Assigned

Home / About us

Ontario's Centre of Forensic Sciences (CFS) is one of the most extensive forensic science facilities in North America. It conducts scientific investigations in cases involving injury or death and in cases involving crimes against persons or property.

Our mission

We are dedicated to enhancing the safety of Ontario’s communities and to supporting justice by providing timely and high quality forensic science services. Our culture of innovation is focused on the development of forensic science services that anticipate the needs of public safety and the justice system.

Our research mandate

Increased Efficiency: a reduction of money, time, labour required to deliver a product or service.
Increased Effectiveness: the degree to which something is successful in producing a desired result.
Transformation: a thorough or dramatic change in form or function.

Increased Objectification: to remove or reduce subjective cognitive influences on the completion of a task
accreditation agency logo

The CFS is accredited by the ANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB). ANAB is a signatory of both the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) and the International Accreditation Forum (IAF) Multilateral Recognition Arrangement (MLA).

Home / Contact Us


Forensic Services and Coroners Complex (FSCC)
25 Morton Shulman Avenue Toronto,
Ontario M3M 0B1

General Inquiries (647) 320-1320
Research & Development Inquiry (647) 329-1395 or Steven.Lintlop@Ontario.ca
Toronto laboratory
Roberta Bondar Place
70 Foster Drive, Suite 500 Sault Ste. Marie,

Ontario P6A 6V3

General Inquiries (705) 945-6550
Research & Development Inquiry (647) 329-1395 or Steven.Lintlop@Ontario.ca
Sault Ste. Marie laboratory

Home / Past & Present Research Partners

Strathclyde University logo University of Toronto Mississauga logo King’s College London university logo
Ontario Tech University Logo Trent University logo CCSA logo
Laurentian University logo Ai2 – 3D Forensics logo