Evaluation of three DNA extraction protocols for forensic STR typing after laser capture microdissection.
ABSTRACT In forensic sciences, short tandem repeat (STR) analysis is a valuable tool in identifying the donor(s) of biological stains. Laser capture microdissection (LCM) can be used as a cell separating technique to isolate specific cell types in mixed samples. An important challenge lies in the development of a DNA isolation method appropriate for laser microdissected cells, as these samples usually contain minute amounts of cells. In this study three different DNA isolation methods for LCM collected cells were compared. The PicoPure DNA extraction method outperformed both other methods (IQ™ system and short alkaline method). Consequently, the minimal number of LCM collected cells necessary for STR typing was determined. Using the PicoPure DNA extraction method, full DNA profiles could be obtained from as little as 10 cells. Nevertheless, despite the occurrence of allelic drop out in some of the samples, lower amounts of cells gave rise to useful DNA profiles.