Age Estimation Using DNA Extracted from Human Saliva as a Diagnostic Measure in Forensic Odontology
Author(s): Keerthana T and Sindhu Ramesh*
Forensic age estimation can be used to gain information relevant to criminal and anthropological investigations. Forensic dentistry involves the processing, review, evaluation and presentation of dental evidence with the purpose of contributing scientific and objective data in legal processes. This study aims in estimating age of a person using DNA extracted from human saliva and to assess this methodology as a potential diagnostic measure in forensic odontology. Salivary samples were collected from 45 blinded participants aged 18 to 70 years with a DNA self-collection kit and stored at room temperature. DNA was extracted from the salivary samples using a separate kit and it was subjected to age estimation process by constructing an age predictive model. A constructed age predictive model of saliva has 6 selected CpG sites (5’—C---phosphate—G---3’) in genome-enabled age prediction with high accuracy. Univariate linear regression analysis was performed to test the association between age and gender.(p value<0.05). DNA methylation profiling of saliva was performed to identify age associated CpG markers. A model composed of 6 selected CpG sites enabled age prediction in saliva with high accuracy and this multiplex system can be integrated into the routine forensic laboratory workflow after further validation tests with various casework samples.