Journal of Forensic Dental Sciences
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 66-69

Determination of sex by exfoliative cytology using acridine orange confocal microscopy: A short study


1 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, Kamineni Institute of Dental Sciences, Narketpally, Nalgonda, Andhra Pradesh, India
2 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, Saveetha Dental College, Saveetha University, Chennai, India

Correspondence Address:
D Shyam Prasad Reddy
Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, Kamineni Institute of Dental Sciences, Narketpally, Nalgonda, Andhra Pradesh
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0975-1475.109887

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Context: Establishing individuality is an imperative aspect in any investigation procedure. Sometimes, in identifying an individual, it becomes necessary to determine the sex of that particular individual. Combining rapidity with reliability, an innovative idea has been put forward using a confocal microscope in exfoliative cytology. In the present study, we have determined the sex of the individual from buccal mucosal scrapings. The exfoliative cells were observed for Barr bodies under a confocal microscope, and the percentage of Barr-body-positive cells was determined. Aims: The main objective of this study is to assess confocal microscopy for the determination of sex by observing Barr bodies in the exfoliative cells of both men and women. Settings and Design: Samples of buccal mucosa smears were made followed by acridine orange staining. The stained slides were observed under a confocal microscope and the data obtained was subjected for statistical analysis, especially for mean and standard deviation. Materials and Methods: Samples of buccal mucosa smears from 20 men and 20 women were obtained by scraping with flat wooden sticks (exfoliative cytology). The smears were fixed in 100% alcohol for 15 min, followed by acridine orange (AO) staining as described by Von Bertalanffy et al. Smears stained with AO were examined under a confocal microscope and the percentage of Barr-body-positive cells was determined. Statistical Analysis Used: Data obtained was subjected for statistical analysis, especially for mean and standard deviation. Results: Two non-overlapping ranges for the percentage of Barr-body-positive cells have been obtained for men and women. It was observed that in the male samples, the percentage of Barr-body-positive cells ranged from 0-3%. In the female samples, the percentage of Barr-body-positive cells ranged from 18-72%, and all the females showed the presence of Barr bodies. Conclusion: The study showed that the presence of Barr body in buccal mucosal cells can be demonstrated with a fair degree of accuracy using acridine orange confocal microscopy. The sex of the individual can be determined accurately with other advantages offered, such as the rapidity of processing and screening a specimen that results in saving of time.


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