Volume 48, Issue 1 (January 2003)
Inhibition of Bleach-Induced Luminol Chemiluminescence
The luminol chemiluminescence presumptive test for blood is based on the mild peroxidase activity of hemoglobin in basic peroxide solution. However, this test is subject to interference by strong oxidants, certain transition metal ions, and true peroxidases. This paper reports methods for reducing the interference caused by hypochlorite-containing bleaches. Amines such as 1,2-diaminoethane react rapidly with hypochlorite without interfering significantly with the hemoglobin-catalyzed oxidation. Thus, addition of 0.1 mol/L 1,2-diaminoethane to a standard luminol-peroxide spray lead to almost complete inhibition of hypochlorite-induced chemiluminescence while satisfactory chemiluminescence was still observed from bloodstains. If time allows, an alternative method for reducing interference from hypochlorite bleach is to wait several days until the bloodstains have dried thoroughly, by which time the hypochlorite will have decomposed.