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J Forensic Sci. 2018 Nov;63(6):1836-1840. doi: 10.1111/1556-4029.13757. Epub 2018 Feb 21.

A Comparison Among Three Multiplex Y-STR Profiling Kits for Sexual Assault Cases.

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Department of Public Health, Forensic Sciences and Medical Education, Faculty of Medicine, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal.
National Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences, Porto, Portugal.
Abel Salazar Biomedical Sciences Institute (ICBAS), University of Porto, Porto, Portugal.
CIIMAR, Matosinhos, Portugal.
Institute of Research and Advanced Training in Health Sciences and Technologies (IINFACTS), Department of Sciences, University Institute of Health Sciences (IUCS-CESPU), Gandra, Portugal.


Biological evidence of sexual assault is one of the most difficult sample types to analyze in forensic laboratories. Y-STR markers are thus a valuable tool for analyzing these samples. The aim of this project was to compare three Y-STR commercial kits by analyzing their amplification performance on casework samples. Overall, 247 trace samples were analyzed with a Yfiler® Plus PCR Amplification Kit (Applied Biosystems), PowerPlex® Y23 (Promega® ) System and AmpFLSTR® Yfiler™ PCR Amplification Kit (Applied Biosystems). Comparing the amplification performance of the three kits, the first two were significantly more sensitive than the latter (p < 0.001). For samples, with a male DNA quantity less than 0.5 ng, the PowerPlex Y23® kit was the most sensitive and best performing kit, followed by the Yfiler® Plus kit (p = 0.009). In conclusion, the Yfiler® Plus and PowerPlex Y-23® kits are viable alternatives to older kits for samples with low amounts of male DNA.


DNA typing; PowerPlex® Y23; Yfiler® Plus; amplification kits; forensic genetics; forensic science; sexual assault; short tandem repeats of Y chromosome

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