Thermo Fisher Scientific introduced a new next-generation sequencing (NGS) panel for forensic DNA analysis. The Applied Biosystems Precision ID GlobalFiler NGS STR Panel v2 panel, combined with Converge Software 2.0, has been developed to allow the highly sensitive differentiation of genetic profiles in complex or degraded forensic DNA mixtures. 

The Precision ID GlobalFiler NGS STR Panel v2 panel is designed to work with the Ion Chef System for automated library and template preparation and sequencing on the Ion S5 and Ion S5 XL systems, which can allow sequencing run times of just two hours and need only 15 minutes hands-on time.

The panel targets CODIS, or Combined DNA Index System, expanded core loci, with additional multiallelic short tandem repeat (STR) markers, including Penta D and Penta E, as well as sex determination markers. Thermo Fisher says the expanded marker set can help identify multiple contributors in complex forensic samples.

Profiles from the panel are created using the new Converge NGS Analysis module. HID STR Genotyper functionality provides information on length-based STR allele call, sequence-based repeat motifs, known single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in flanking regions, and isometric heterozygotes (alleles of the same fragment length that contain different repeat sequences).

The interface is similar to that of Applied Biosystems’ GeneMapper® ID-X software, so forensic analysts can easily evaluate sequencing data using familiar Process Quality Values and flags, such as allele number (AN), off-ladder allele (OL), peak height ratio (PHR), below stochastic threshold (BST), and control concordance (CC).

“Our customers need more access to genetic identification profiles from complex DNA samples, prompting the continued development of the Precision ID NGS System, additional panels, and a more comprehensive data analysis pipeline,” said Rosy Lee, vp and general manager of human identification at Thermo Fisher Scientific.

“NGS now has the ability to transform forensic genetics by enabling the recovery of highly discriminating allelic profiles from challenging mixed or degraded samples,” added Claus Børsting, Ph.D., senior advisor at the section of forensic genetics, department of forensic medicine, University of Copenhagen, Denmark. “Our tests show full concordance with capillary electrophoresis (CE)-based methods, high sensitivity, and new possibilities for mixture interpretation.”








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