Int J Legal Med (2009) 123:437–440 DOI 10.1007/s00414-008-0285-8
Sex determination from buccal mucosa scrapes
Tushar Mittal & K. Muralidhar Saralaya & Ajee Kuruvilla & Chandrayya Achary
Received: 13 September 2007 / Accepted: 8 September 2008 / Published online: 24 September 2008 # Springer-Verlag 2008
Abstract Establishing individuality is an imperative aspect in anyinvestigation procedure. At times, it becomes necessary to determine the sex of the individual to establish identity, and saliva stains found at the scene of crime are of major help in such cases. In the present study, we have determined the sex of the individual from buccal mucosal scrapings. Buccal smears prepared from 100 men and 100 women were stained by the Papanicolaou staining method. Cellswere observed for Barr bodies under oil immersion with a compound microscope, and the percentage of Barr-body-positive cells was determined. It was observed that 1.14% of buccal mucosal cells in men (range=0–4%) and 39.29% of buccal mucosal cells in women (range=20–78%) showed Barr bodies. Inferences from the study show that the presence of Barr body in buccal mucosal cells can be demonstratedwith a fair degree of accuracy using Papanicolaou staining. The sex of the individual can be determined accurately, as two non-overlapping ranges for the
percentage of Barr-body-positive cells has been obtained for men and women. This method not only proves to be accurate but is also simple and economic. Keywords Sex . Buccal mucosa . Papanicolaou . Barr body
Introduction Establishingindividuality is an imperative aspect in any investigating procedure. There are numerous means and ways to do so in human beings (either alive or dead) when a human body is in its entirety but very few when only part(s) is available. Human specimens, such as blood, semen, hair, and saliva stains containing buccal mucosal cells, found at the scene of crime or on a lethal weapon, are of major help insolving criminal cases. In cases of sexual offences, the buccal mucosal cells along with saliva stains are found in various parts of the body and also at the scene of crime. Saliva stains may be present on cigarette butts and also on cups and glasses which criminals have used. Often, it becomes necessary to determine the sex of the individual from whom these stains originate. Determination of sex helpsin criminal investigations for identification of the person which can help in solving many cases of assault, theft, and sexual offences, etc. In train and aircraft accidents and also in natural disasters, it becomes difficult to identify the bodies. In such instances, buccal smears could help in detecting the sex and thereby establishing the identity. Demonstration of nuclear sex plays a vitalrole as far as sexing of the individual is concerned. Nuclear sex can be demonstrated by the study of: Karyotyping: direct study of type of sex chromosome in the cell by culture of the cell. This is expensive and is not feasible in all institutions.
T. Mittal Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore, Karnataka, India K. M. Saralaya Department of Forensic Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore,Karnataka, India A. Kuruvilla Department of Forensic Medicine, A.J. Institute of Medical Sciences, Mangalore, Karnataka, India C. Achary Department of Pathology, Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore, Karnataka, India T. Mittal (*) Room No.206, ‘C’ Block, KMC Men’s Hostel, Kaprigudda, Mangalore 575001 Karnataka, India e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Int J Legal Med (2009) 123:437–440Fluorescent body (Y chromatin): a demonstration of nuclear fluorescent bodies indicates male. This requires special stain and fluorescence microscope. Polymerase chain reaction: polymerase chain reaction to amplify DNA sequences on the sex chromosome. This is similar to karyotyping as it is not feasible in all institutes. It is expensive and inferior to karyotyping but not superior to the...
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