Kavitha R, Tan TC, Lee HL, Nazni WA and Sofian-Azirun M (2013). DNA typing of Calliphorids collected from human corpses in Malaysia. Tropical Biomedicine 30(1): 119-124
Estimation of post-mortem interval (PMI) is crucial for time of death determination. The advent of DNA-based identification techniques forensic entomology saw the beginning of a proliferation of molecular studies into forensically important Calliphoridae (Diptera). The use of DNA to characterise morphologically indistinguishable immature calliphorids was recognised as a valuable molecular tool with enormous practical utility. The local entomofauna in most cases is important for the examination of entomological evidences. The survey of the local entomofauna has become a fundamental first step in forensic entomological studies, because different geographical distributions, seasonal and environmental factors may influence the decomposition process and the occurrence of different insect species on corpses. In this study, calliphorids were collected from 13 human corpses recovered from indoors, outdoors and aquatic conditions during the post-mortem examination by pathologists from the government hospitals in Malaysia. Only two species, Chrysomya megacephala and Chrysomya rufifacies were recovered from human corpses. DNA sequencing was performed to study the mitochondrial encoded COI gene and to evaluate the suitability of the 1300 base pairs of COI fragments for identification of blow fly species collected from real crime scene. The COI gene from blow fly specimens were sequenced and deposited in GenBank to expand local databases. The sequenced COI gene was useful in identifying calliphorids retrieved from human corpses.