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Haas C.,University of Zurich | Hanson E.,University of Central Florida | Anjos M.J.,National Institute of Legal Medicine | Bar W.,University of Zurich | And 31 more authors.
Forensic Science International: Genetics | Year: 2012

A second collaborative exercise on RNA/DNA co-analysis for body fluid identification and STR profiling was organized by the European DNA Profiling Group (EDNAP). Six human blood stains, two blood dilution series (5-0.001 μl blood) and, optionally, bona fide or mock casework samples of human or non-human origin were analyzed by the participating laboratories using a RNA/DNA co-extraction or solely RNA extraction method. Two novel mRNA multiplexes were used for the identification of blood: a highly sensitive duplex (HBA, HBB) and a moderately sensitive pentaplex (ALAS2, CD3G, ANK1, SPTB and PBGD). The laboratories used different chemistries and instrumentation. All of the 18 participating laboratories were able to successfully isolate and detect mRNA in dried blood stains. Thirteen laboratories simultaneously extracted RNA and DNA from individual stains and were able to utilize mRNA profiling to confirm the presence of blood and to obtain autosomal STR profiles from the blood stain donors. The positive identification of blood and good quality DNA profiles were also obtained from old and compromised casework samples. The method proved to be reproducible and sensitive using different analysis strategies. The results of this collaborative exercise involving a RNA/DNA co-extraction strategy support the potential use of an mRNA based system for the identification of blood in forensic casework that is compatible with current DNA analysis methodology. © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved. Source


Haas C.,University of Zurich | Hanson E.,University of Central Florida | Bar W.,University of Zurich | Banemann R.,Bundeskriminalamt | And 27 more authors.
Forensic Science International: Genetics | Year: 2011

A collaborative exercise on mRNA profiling for the identification of blood was organized by the European DNA Profiling Group (EDNAP). Seven blood samples and one blood dilution series were analyzed by the participating laboratories for the reportedly blood-specific markers HBB, SPTB and PBGD, using different kits, chemistries and instrumentation. The results demonstrate that HBB is expressed abundantly in blood, SPTB moderately and PBGD significantly less. All but one of the 16 participating laboratories were able to successfully isolate and detect RNA from the dried bloodstains even though a majority of the laboratories had no prior experience with RNA. Despite some expected variation in sensitivity between laboratories, the method proved to be reproducible and sensitive using different analysis strategies. The results of this collaborative exercise support the potential use of mRNA profiling as an alternative to conventional serological tests. © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved. Source


Haas C.,University of Zurich | Hanson E.,University of Central Florida | Anjos M.J.,National Institute of Legal Medicine | Banemann R.,Bundeskriminalamt | And 35 more authors.
Forensic Science International: Genetics | Year: 2013

A third collaborative exercise on RNA/DNA co-analysis for body fluid identification and STR profiling was organized by the European DNA Profiling Group (EDNAP). Twenty saliva and semen stains, four dilution series (10-0.01 μl saliva, 5-0.01 μl semen) and, optionally, bona fide or mock casework samples of human or non-human origin were analyzed by 20 participating laboratories using an RNA extraction or RNA/DNA co-extraction method. Two novel mRNA multiplexes were used: a saliva triplex (HTN3, STATH and MUC7) and a semen pentaplex (PRM1, PRM2, PSA, SEMG1 and TGM4). The laboratories used different chemistries and instrumentation and a majority (16/20) were able to successfully isolate and detect mRNA in dried stains. The simultaneous extraction of RNA and DNA from individual stains not only permitted a confirmation of the presence of saliva/semen (i.e. tissue/fluid source of origin), but allowed an STR profile of the stain donor to be obtained as well. The method proved to be reproducible and sensitive, with as little as 0.05 μl saliva or semen, using different analysis strategies. Additionally, we demonstrated the ability to positively identify the presence of saliva and semen, as well as obtain high quality DNA profiles, from old and compromised casework samples. The results of this collaborative exercise involving an RNA/DNA co-extraction strategy support the potential use of an mRNA based system for the identification of saliva and semen in forensic casework that is compatible with current DNA analysis methodologies. © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. Source


Giampaoli S.,Foro Italico University of Rome | Berti A.,Reparto Investigazioni Scientifiche di Rome | Valeriani F.,Foro Italico University of Rome | Gianfranceschi G.,Foro Italico University of Rome | And 6 more authors.
Forensic Science International: Genetics | Year: 2012

The discrimination of body fluids in forensic examinations can play an important role in crime scene reconstruction. Conventional methods rely on the detection of antigens or enzymatic activity, limiting detection sensitivity and specificity, particularly on old forensic samples. Methods based on human RNA analysis are not easily applicable to samples exposed to harsh and degrading environments. An alternative approach based on the identification of prokaryotic genomes was developed. Specific bacterial communities are characteristic typical of different human non-sterile body fluids: the molecular characterization of a microbial signature, and not the typing of single bacterial species, can effectively lead to univocal identification of these fluids. A multiplex real time PCR assay was developed using oligonucleotide mixtures targeting genomes specific for a selected group of bacteria. Microflora DNA (mfDNA) was extracted from vaginal, oral and fecal clinical swabs. In addition forensic samples were processed. Vaginal samples showed a strong specific signal for bacteria of the female genital tract. Oral samples clearly showed signal for bacteria present in saliva, and in fecal samples the main signal was from Enterococcaceae. Vaginal casework samples showed results comparable to freshly collected ones; moreover the DNA extracted was successfully used for STR typing. Also mixtures of body fluids were analyzed, providing a microbiological signature compatible with the presence of microbes of oral, fecal and vaginal origin. The presented method can be useful in identifying biological fluids, and it is based on DNA technologies already available in forensic laboratories and feasible for further high throughput automation. © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved. Source

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