Experts: toothbrushes help identify gender victims of crime

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Illustration by Feri Fenoria

UNAIR NEWS – So far, anthropological analysis and DNA analysis are methods that are often used in examining the sex of victims of crime. Some samples that are often used as identification material are blood spots, cement spots, vaginal swabs, buccalswab and bones. Besides, gender identification can also be done through objects that are often used by perpetrators or victims for the last time, such as toothbrushes.

Dr. Ahmad Yudianto, SpFM [K]., SH., M. Kes., Lecturer in Faculty of Social and Political Sciences (FISIP) in his paper. “In its use, toothbrushes stick to the oral mucosa; tooth; gum; and tongue. Thus, there is the possibility of loose epithelial cells attached to the toothbrush, “he said.

Ahmad revealed toothbrush can be used as an alternative material in the identification of personal biologimoleculer, namely through polymerase chain reaction (PCR). He explained that one PCR technique for sex identification was by amplification of the amelogenin homologous X-Y gene. “Amelogenin is relatively easy to use for DNA amplification,” he said.

The study was conducted on a toothbrush that had been used for one week by respondents in a Tanzanian population in Surabaya. Furthermore, the toothbrush samples were sent to a laboratory for analysis of gender examination.

Ahmad explained PCR method was proven to have broad uses for forensics because of its simplicity; sensitivity, and reliability; “This method can theoretically detect the sex of a cell and the process is much faster,” he said.

Besides, personal identification includes age; gender; race; height; stature and so on. “DNA results from hair are still not so perfect or cryptic and it is because DNA levels are still quite low, not to mention the process of DNA degradation,” he said.

While the identification methods include fingerprints; property; medical; tooth; serology; and the method of exclusion. “Determining the exact personal identity is very important in the investigation. Because if there is a mistake, it can have fatal consequences in the judicial process, ” he concluded. (*)

Author: Erika Eight Novanty

Editor: Nuri Hermawan

Reference : Simon Martin ManyanzaNzilibili, Ahmad Yudianto, [2019], Amelgene profiling from tooth brush for sex determination among tanzanians in Surabaya, East Java. Journal Punjab Academic of Forensic Medicine Toxicology, Vol 19 No.1/ISSN 0972-5687, pp 51-54 Link :

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