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Forensic Sci Int. 1991 Jan-Feb;49(1):81-8.

Sex identification of forensic specimens by polymerase chain reaction (PCR): two alternative methods.

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Department of Legal Medicine, Shimane Medical University, Izumo, Japan.


Sex identification of forensic samples (bloodstains and decomposed tissue) by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was investigated. Amplification of a segment of the amelogenin gene using a pair of primers revealed both Y- and X-specific bands at the same time. The gene has counterparts in both the X and Y chromosomes and a small deletion in the former made it possible to distinguish them. Analysis of the X-specific band is the most reliable method for sex identification. THe locus includes a single copy gene so a sample of 250 ng/tube of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is required for identification. Amplification of part of the DYZ1 locus was attempted as an alternative method for analysis of infinitesimal amounts of sample. Even DNA from putrefied tissue could be analyzed by PCR because the locus consists of thousands of copies of repeating units pHY10.

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