Analysis of mRNA Expression for Injury-Age Estimation

Nusrat Saba, Saadia Noreen, Mubarak Ali Anjum, Saqib Ali, Muhammad Jawad, Allah Rakha


Background: Determination of wound age is pivotal in forensic medical sciences, criminal and civil cases for the construction of crime scene and answering the questions like, time of infliction, manner of wound infliction, how long the person survives after infliction of wound and characterizing antemortem or postmortem wounds. The findings differ considerably among individuals due to the biological variations. Previous developed method in the injury-age determination is clinical, microscopic, enzymatic reaction at the wound margins, histological, and immunohistochemistry with the pitfalls associated with it.

Methods: This study is conducted on blunt injuries, particularly lacerated wound (type of wound inflicted by blunt weapon) to analyze the different expression pattern in injury-age up to 72hrs in total 21 individuals randomly grouped in different time intervals. To determine the time of injury, transcript abundance of mRNA of Fibronectin (FBN), IL1β, VEGFA, and GM-CSF was analyzed by real time polymerase chain reaction. 18S-rRNA was used as control marker.

Results: Percent knockdown (%KD) was calculated to determine the expression of mRNA for the determination of injury-age. IL1β and GM-CSF showed the predictive behavior for wound age up to 36hrs, Fibronectin (FBN) showed predictive behavior up to 12hrs while VEGFA showed prediction beyond 72hrs.

Conclusion: The detection of gradual decrease of mRNA of Fibronectin (FBN), IL1β, VEGFA, and GM-CSF may provide an estimation of wound-age.

Keywords: mRNA Expression; Injury-Age Estimation; Antemortem wounds; Postmortem wounds

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