COMPARISON OF COPAN FORENSIC COLLECTION KITS TO TRADITIONAL FORENSIC DEVICES FOR MAXIMIZING CRIME SCENE SAMPLE PROCUREMENT

BACKGROUND

Currently, sample procurement from crime scenes is done with collection kits containing traditional swabs made with cotton, polyester, rayon or cellulose. Copan developed forensic (4N6) FLOQSwabsTM (FFS) that are specifically designed in regular, flat, round/rims, or under nails formats to facilitate and maximize crime scene sample collection. FFS are treated to neutralize microbial contaminants, while preserving nucleic acids (NA) integrity and eliminate the need for drying the swab before or during transport or storage.

OBJECTIVE

  • Compare the Copan forensic collection swabs to traditional forensic collection devices, like the Sarstedt forensic swabs and the Whatman® Omniswab for procurement and preservation of nucleic acids for forensic investigation.
  • Validate the FFS ability to preserve nucleic acids in samples with a heavy load of bacterial flora.
  • Validate the quality of nucleic acid for profiling.
  • Validate the ease of use of the special designed FFS for sample collection.

CONCLUSIONS

Copan 4N6 FLOQSwabsTM are collecting and preserving 2.2 to 33 times more DNA compared to the Sarstedt and Whatman Omniswabs forensic swabs.

The Copan 4N6 FLOQSwabsTM can be used for sample collection in heavily contaminated environment, even after 10 days storage at room temperature, without the need of drying.

The Copan 4N6 FLOQSwabsTM were easy to handle especially for bottle rim and under nails collection, while Whatman Omniswab and Sartstedt swab often were damaged after collection, especially on hard surfaces.

Future studies using 4N6 FLOQSwabsTM on real crime investigation are in progress.