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Combined Extraction Method for Mitochondrial DNA and Proteins from Hair for Human Identification

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 2020
15 pages
This is the Final Summary Overview of the methodology and findings of a project with the goal of developing and demonstrating a method for obtaining whole mitochondrial (mt)-genome haplotype and proteomic profiles from a single limited hair sample.

The project involved the following four tasks: 1) sample collection (head, pubic, and arm hair, as well as saliva); 2) workflow ideation and planning; 3) baseline analysis; and 4) workflow down-selection (testing the work-flows against established metrics for a working set of hair samples). The work-flow ideation and planning (task 3) involved establishing a working "detection limit" for current state-of-the-art methods, i.e., SD (Sodium Dodecanoate) method, Modified SD method, Triple Prep kit, and FASP method. Various hair lengths from three donors were tested, using the four protein extraction methods. The FASP and SD methods resulted in measurable mtDNA yields in all cases. For 1-cm hair lengths, the FASP method outperformed the SD method. The FASP method provided higher quantities of mtDNA than all other combined methods tested. Optimization of various steps of this method improved results. The researchers envision results from this project having an immediate impact on current proteomics research for purposes of human identification.

Date Published: January 1, 2020