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Revealing Individual Lifestyles Through Mass Spectrometry Imaging of Chemical Compounds in Fingerprints

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 2018
10 pages
This study examined a range of exogenous fingerprint compounds that may reveal a personal lifestyle, using matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry imaging (MALDI-MSI).
Fingerprints, specifically the ridge details within the print, have long been used in forensic investigations for individual identification. Beyond the ridge detail, fingerprints contain useful chemical information. The study of fingerprint chemical information has become of interest, especially with mass spectrometry imaging technologies. Mass spectrometry imaging visualizes the spatial relationship of each compound detected, allowing ridge detail and chemical information in a single analysis. Chemical compounds examined in the current project included various brands of bug sprays and sunscreens, as well as food oils, alcohols, and citrus fruits. Brand differentiation and source determination were possible based on the active ingredients or exclusive compounds left in fingerprints. Tandem mass spectrometry was performed for the key compounds, so that these compounds could be confidently identified in a single multiplex mass spectrometry imaging data acquisition. 7 figures and 32 references (Publisher abstract modified)
Date Published: January 1, 2018