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Croat Med J. 2012 Feb 15;53(1):17-23.

Highly efficient nuclear DNA typing of the World War II skeletal remains using three new autosomal short tandem repeat amplification kits with the extended European Standard Set of loci.

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  • 1Institute of Forensic Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Korytkova 2, Ljubljana, Slovenia.



To perform an efficiency study of three new amplification kits with the extended European Standard Set (ESS) of loci for autosomal short tandem repeat (STR) typing of skeletal remains excavated from the World War II mass graves in Slovenia.


In the beginning of the 2011, we analyzed 102 bones and teeth using the PowerPlex ESX 17 System (Promega), AmpFiSTR NGM PCR Amplification Kit (Applied Biosystems), and Investigator ESSplex Kit (Qiagen). We cleaned the bones and teeth, removed surface contamination, and ground them into a powder using liquid nitrogen. Prior to DNA isolation with Biorobot EZ1 (Qiagen), 0.5 g bone or tooth powder was decalcified. Nuclear DNA of the samples was quantified using real-time polymerase chain reaction. All three kits used the same extract with the amplification conditions recommended by the manufacturers.


We extracted up to 131 ng DNA/g of powder from the bones and teeth. All three amplification kits showed very similar efficiency, since DNA typing was successful with all amplification kits in 101 out of 102 bones and teeth, which represents a 99% success rate.


The commercially available ESX 17, ESSplex, and NGM kits are highly reliable for STR typing of World War II skeletal remains with the DNA extraction method optimized in our laboratory.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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