Volume 43, Issue 6 (November 1998)
Recovery of DNA from Human Teeth by Cryogenic Grinding
DNA has been previously recovered from human teeth for RFLP and PCR-based forensic analysis. In some cases, the maximum amount of undisturbed tooth structure is required for ulterior forensic analysis. But, in most cases, following comprehensive documentation, it is possible to section the tooth longitudinally or horizontally, or crush it to access the DNA-rich core. This technical report describes an alternative method to recover DNA from whole extracted human molar teeth. A 6700 freezer mill was used to pulverize 20 teeth under frozen preparation in liquid nitrogen and sterile conditions. The mean yield of DNA was 30.9 μg (18.4 μg DNA per gm tooth powder). The resulting fine powder was subjected to organic extraction and subsequently quantified using slot blot hybridization. Aliquots were successfully amplified at three short tandem repeat polymorphic loci. The technique is simple and relatively rapid. Isolation of the samples during pulverization minimizes the risk of contamination.