Forensic Science, Mitochondrial DNA, SNPs, Coding Region, Pyrosequencing
To date, the use of mitochondrial DNA in forensic analysis has relied on the presence of variations in the control region to differentiate between samples. One problem that this analysis has shown is the occurrence of common Haplogroup H haplotypes or identical sequences. Thus, there is a need to enhance the distinguishing power of this type of analysis. One option has been to investigate the mitochondrial coding region for polymorphisms that could differentiate between samples with identical control region haplotypes. The goal of this study has been to identify polymorphic coding region sites for development in a Pyrosequencing assay that would effectively enhance the discriminatory power of mitochondrial DNA analysis. With this goal in mind, five duplexes have been successfully developed and tested, utilizing the ten polymorphic sites that had been selected, with most sites being specific to Caucasians. Validation studies were performed to test the durability of the assay. The specificity of the assay to primate and non-primate species was determined to be limited to primate species only. Sample variations, including mixtures, dilutions and environmental exposure, were utilized to assess the sensitivity of the Pyrosequencing method. It was found that a minimum initial DNA input of 10fg was necessary for reliable results. The Pyrosequencing assay was able to detect mixtures at a 1:1 ratio and environmental samples exposed to the elements from up to 1 week for blood and 6 weeks for semen. Samples designed to simulate typical casework materials were analyzed and found to provide for consistent results, including trace fingerprints and digested hair shafts. These validation results provide the conclusion that this assay is suitable for use in forensic casework and demonstrate that the mitochondrial coding region provides a viable alternative to hypervariable region analysis.
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Master of Science (M.S.)
College of Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Parker, Kyle Robert Carl, "Analysis Of Mitochondrial Dna Coding Region Snps By Pyrosequencing" (2007). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2004-2019. 3291.