(Received 26 September 1987; accepted 27 January 1988)
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A sensitive radioimmunoassay for the detection of human hemoglobin in dried bloodstains for the purpose of forensic science species identification has been developed. Bloodstains from 13 animal species were tested and found to be negative for human blood. A minimum volume of 0.8 μL of fresh blood is required to produce sufficient stain for successful testing. Bloodstains prepared from newborn and sickle-cell bloods were determined to be human. Bloodstains ranging in age from 1 month to 6 years which had been maintained desiccated at 20 to 25°C were also successfully tested. Positive results were obtained on human bloodstains stored at 24°C with relative humidity ranging from 0 to 98% for a period of 3 weeks. Absolute counts per minute (CPM) decreased with increased humidity. Human bloodstains exposed to bacterial contamination (gram positive or negative species) under humid conditions for 2 weeks also tested positive. Bacterial contamination caused a decrease in CPM, but insufficient to result in an erroneous conclusion as to species of origin. Positive results were also obtained on human bloodstains stored for 6 weeks at various temperatures ranging from − 16 to 37°C. No significant decreases in CPM were noted for any of the temperature conditions described.
Associate professor of biology and immunology, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York, New York, NY
Forensic scientist, North Regional Laboratory, Division of State Police, Little Falls, NJ
Stock #: JFS12581J