Methods and findings in experimental and clinical pharmacology vol:23 issue:9 pages:511-7
DNA analysis has recently been introduced to forensic dentistry and is now frequently used in identifying individuals or determining the origin of certain tissues. This review reports on teeth and saliva as a source of DNA. Not only the quantity of DNA available for the laboratory is important, but also the quality and purity. Teeth are resistant against extreme circumstances such as temperature, humidity and acidity, which is an important advantage in DNA analysis. Furthermore, an abundance of DNA can be extracted from teeth. Saliva can be obtained in a simple, painless and non-radical way. The double swab method is very effective; DNA recovery is significantly higher with the double swab method compared to the single swab or filter paper method. This review reports on the different techniques used to extract DNA from teeth and saliva, as well as DNA analysis of these samples. The usefulness and advantages of the double swab method for saliva, cryogenic grinding for teeth and the chelex extraction and polymerase chain reaction for both types of samples is also described. DNA analysis has proven its value in forensic dentistry, but ethical and juridical considerations are still a matter of debate and criticism.