Human remains processed by forensic anthropologists may potentially be used for genetic analysis. Therefore, the condition of the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) in processed remains may become an issue for future analysis. Processing techniques employed by anthropologists are highly variable and scanning electron microscopy reveals significant alterations to the bone surface depending upon the technique used. Such damage to the bone indicates differences may exist in quality and quantity of DNA extracted. This study assessed how five processing procedures used by major forensic anthropology laboratories around the country affects the amounts of DNA extracted from human rib bones and the subsequent DNA analysis. The DNA was analyzed using the short tandem repeat (STR) locus CSF1PO and amelogenin. The findings indicate processing procedures used by forensic anthropologists do not adversely affect DNA analysis but prolonged exposure to heat during processing may decrease the yield of information from the DNA.
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