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Rapid Differentiation of Epithelial Cell Types in Aged Biological Samples Using Autofluorescence and Morphological Signatures

NCJ Number
PLoS ONE Volume: 13 Issue: 5 Dated: 2018
Date Published
8 pages

Since establishing the tissue source of epithelial cells within a biological sample is an important capability for forensic laboratories, this study used Imaging Flow Cytometry (IFC) to analyze individual cells recovered from buccal, epidermal, and vaginal samples that had been dried between 24 hours and just over 8 weeks.


Measurements that captured the size, shape, and fluorescent properties of cells were collected in an automated manner and then used to build a multivariate statistical framework for differentiating cells based on tissue type. Results showed that epidermal cells could be distinguished from vaginal and buccal cells using a discriminant function analysis of IFC measurements with an average classification accuracy of ~94 percent. Ultimately, cellular measurements such as these, which can be obtained non-destructively, may provide probative information for many types of biological samples and complement results from standard genetic profiling techniques. 4 table, 3 figures, and 21 references (publisher abstract modified)

Date Published: January 1, 2018