The use of 2,2′-azino-di-[3-ethylbenzthiazolinesulfonate(6)] diammonium salt (ABTS) for the enhancement of fingerprints in blood has been investigated. Optimal pH conditions and H2O2 concentrations have been determined using UV/Vis spectroscopy. ABTS is an effective and safe noncarcinogenic (though more expensive) alternative to the presently used 3,3′-diaminobenzidine (DAB) for the development of blood fingerprints, especially on porous surfaces. The bright green color of the oxidized ABTS is an advantage on certain colored surfaces where the dark brown color of DAB does not stand out well from the background. Development with ABTS does not interfere with subsequent DAB treatment, making ABTS a “nothing-to-lose” reagent. ABTS can be used after ninhydrin treatment, but the reverse is not the case.
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