BMB Rep. 2016; 49(7): 359-369  
Forensic DNA methylation profiling from evidence material for investigative leads
Hwan Young Lee1,*, Soong Deok Lee2 & Kyoung-Jin Shin1
1Department of Forensic Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul 03722, 2Department of Forensic Medicine, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul 03080, Korea
Correspondence to: Tel: +82-2-2228-2482; Fax: +82-2-362-0860; E-mail:
Received: April 20, 2016; Published online: July 31, 2016.
© Korean Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. All rights reserved.

DNA methylation is emerging as an attractive marker providing investigative leads to solve crimes in forensic genetics. The identification of body fluids that utilizes tissue-specific DNA methylation can contribute to solving crimes by predicting activity related to the evidence material. The age estimation based on DNA methylation is expected to reduce the number of potential suspects, when the DNA profile from the evidence does not match with any known person, including those stored in the forensic database. Moreover, the variation in DNA implicates environmental exposure, such as cigarette smoking and alcohol consumption, thereby suggesting the possibility to be used as a marker for predicting the lifestyle of potential suspect. In this review, we describe recent advances in our understanding of DNA
methylation variations and the utility of DNA methylation as a forensic marker for advanced investigative leads from evidence materials.
Keywords: Age prediction, Body fluid identification, DNA methylation, Forensic genetics, Investigative lead

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