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PowerPlex® 16 versus Identifiler® Systems Sensitivity and Effects of Inhibitors

Abstract

Analysis of DNA recovered from a casework environment can be fraught with difficulties, including DNA degradation, limiting amounts of DNA and the presence of PCR inhibitors. Overcoming these challenges requires the use of a sensitive STR amplification system that is relatively insensitive to the inhibitory effects of DNA contaminants common in casework samples. We examined the relative sensitivities of the single-amplification PowerPlex® 16 System and AmpF lSTR® Identifiler® PCR amplification kit and determined the effect of common PCR inhibitors on the ability of these kits to generate full profiles. The PowerPlex® 16 System was clearly more sensitive than the Identifiler® kit when amplifying picogram amounts of DNA and demonstrably less sensitive to PCR inhibitors.