Nuclear and mitochondrial DNA quantification of various forensic materials

H. Andréasson, M. Nilsson, B. Budowle, H. Lundberg, M. Allen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Due to the different types and quality of forensic evidence materials, their DNA content can vary substantially, and particularly low quantities can impact the results in an identification analysis. In this study, the quantity of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA was determined in a variety of materials using a previously described real-time PCR method. DNA quantification in the roots and distal sections of plucked and shed head hairs revealed large variations in DNA content particularly between the root and the shaft of plucked hairs. Also large intra- and inter-individual variations were found among hairs. In addition, DNA content was estimated in samples collected from fingerprints and accessories. The quantification of DNA on various items also displayed large variations, with some materials containing large amounts of nuclear DNA while no detectable nuclear DNA and only limited amounts of mitochondrial DNA were seen in others. Using this sensitive real-time PCR quantification assay, a better understanding was obtained regarding DNA content and variation in commonly analysed forensic evidence materials and this may guide the forensic scientist as to the best molecular biology approach for analysing various forensic evidence materials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-64
Number of pages9
JournalForensic Science International
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2006


  • Forensic materials
  • Hair
  • Mitochondrial DNA
  • Nuclear DNA
  • Quantification
  • Real-time PCR


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