Presentation on theme: "Forensic Serology: Color tests"— Presentation transcript:
1 Forensic Serology: Color tests By: Mike O'neillMazin OsmanClaudia PalmaAdam Ramirez
2 Color Tests Determination of blood are made by conducting color tests The Benzidine test was the most commonly used for many years.However it has been replaced by the Kastle- Meyer test because the benzidine has been identified as a known carcinogen (Can cause cancer)
3 Color TestsThe Benzidine and Kastle-Meyer color tests are based on the observation that hemoglobin possesses peroxidase-like activityHemoglobin- A red blood cell protein that transports oxygen in the bloodstream; it is responsible for the red color of bloodPeroxidases are enzymes that accelerate the oxidation of several classes of organic compounds when combined with peroxides
4 Kastle-Meyer TestThe Kastle-Meyer test relies on the iron in hemoglobin to promote the oxidation of phenolphthalin to phenolphthalein.Phenolphthalin is colorless, but in the presence of blood and hydrogen peroxide, it changes to phenolphthalein, which makes the solution pink.
5 Sensitivity and Limitations It is extremely sensitiveCapable of detect blood dilutions as low as 1x10^7If the test result is negative, heme might be absent in the sampleThe test will give a false positive result in the presence of any oxidizing agent like cauliflower or broccoli
6 Performing The Kastle-Meyer Test Collect a sample of the blood using a cotton swab (if the blood is dry, water could be used to moisten the swab)Add two drops of 70% ethanol to the swab (Helps increase the sensitivity of the test)Add a drop or two of the Kastle-Meyer solutionAdd two drops of hydrogen peroxide solution
7 Results Pink Color Develops Results Interpretation After Kastle-Meyer is appliedFalse PositiveThe reaction did not occur as the result of blood’s presenceAfter hydrogen peroxide is appliedPositiveblood is indicatedNeverNegativeBlood is not indicated (may not be present)False NegativeBlood may be present, but is too dilute to react
8 Benzidine Color TestThe benzidine color test was, for many years, the most popular type of preliminary blood test.In 1988, however, benzidine was identified as a carcinogen and since then its use has mostly been discontinued.Benzidine + Blood Stain + Hydrogen Peroxide = Pink Color
9 Strengths of Benzidine It was a common test for blood.It is a presumptive test for identifying BloodAn enzyme in blood causes the benzidine to be oxidized to a polymerwhich is blue colored. This makes it very easy to find the result
10 Weaknesses of Benzidine This test is very unreliable. Although a test may appear that it has been positive, the substance that was found due to the color presence may not be the actual substance that was involved.It is a carcinogen which has been used as part of a test for cyanide and also in the synthesis of dyes. It has been linked to bladder cancer and pancreatic cancer.It is highly sensitive.
11 Hemastix Presumptive field test for blood Designed as a dipstick test for bloodInvolves moistening a strip in distilled water and then placing it into contact with a suspect blood stainIf the strip appears to turn green, it is positive for blood
12 Strength and Weaknesses Strengths:Easy to useCan be used on the field easilyWeaknesses:Not as accurate as the Kastle-Meyer or Benzidine tests
13 Susan May CaseOn March 12, 1992, Susan May was visiting her aunt Hilda Marchbank. She arrived at the house at approximately 9:30 am and discovered Hilda dead on her bed. She was savagely beaten on her head and face and was smothered with a pillow.
14 Susan May CaseInvestigators found a number of stains that appeared as blood on the walls of the scene.The Kastle-Meyer tests was performed to indicate whether it was blood or notSome of the stains contained Susan May's bloodSusan May was arrested on March 30, in connection with the murder of Hilda Marchbank
15 Meredith Kercher CaseMeredith Kercher was found dead in the bedroom of her apartment in Perugia, Italy. She had several stab wounds in her throat.The Kastle-Meyer test was performed on a substance that appeared to be blood and came back positive.However, this could have been wrong because the pink color could have been caused by reagents used in fingerprint analysis.
16 Review Questions What are color tests used for? What are the three tests mentioned in this presentation?What color does a positive Kastle-Meyer tests turn?What is oneWhat color does the Benzidine test turn?Why was the Benzidine test discontinued?What color does a hemastix strip turn if it is positive for blood?
17 SourcesSaferstein, R. (2011). Forensic Science - An Introduction (Second ed., p. 293). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.Bloodstains. (n.d.). Retrieved April 2, 2013, fromBenzidine (CASRN ). (n.d.). In EPA Integrated Risk Information System. Retrieved April 2, 2013, fromprojects/project_ideas/BioChem_p037.shtml#background