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NCJ Number: 207709 Find in a Library
Title: Comparison Study of Hair Examination Methodologies
Journal: Journal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:49  Issue:6  Dated:November 2004  Pages:1253-1255
Author(s): Jason C. Kolowski M.S.; Nicholas Petraco; Margaret M. Wallace Ph.D.; Peter R. De Forest; Mechthild Prinz Ph.D.
Date Published: November 2004
Page Count: 3
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study compared the accuracy of two methods of hair analysis: PCR-STR DNA analysis and microscopic comparison analysis.
Abstract: Pubic hairs were collected from 27 volunteers employed in the Department of Forensic Biology at the Office of Chief Medical Examiner in New York City. Written instructions were provided for collecting and transferring the hairs, with each subject providing a minimum of 50 pubic hairs collected in a manner that maximized the number of anagenic/catagenic hairs in the standard sets. Procedures for analyzing the sample sets by the two methods of analysis are described. The study found that the two independent systems of hair analysis have their unique role in forensic hair analysis. Independently, both systems were successful in identifying/individualizing unknown hairs. The microscopic hair analysis was more successful than the DNA analysis due to the presence of a large number of microscopic minutiae within a hair and the experience of the examiner. STR DNA was less successful than microscopic analysis due to the lack of sufficient quantities of DNA in some of the hair roots. Microscopy might be used to narrow the scope of the investigation, followed by DNA analysis to individualize the separated hairs. 1 table and 7 references
Main Term(s): Police policies and procedures
Index Term(s): Comparative analysis; DNA fingerprinting; Forensic sciences; Hair and fiber analysis; Investigative techniques
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