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Evaluation of Pollen Extraction Methodologies from Soil Substrate for Forensic Applications

Department of Forensic Science, University Institute of Applied Health Sciences, Chandigarh University, Gharuan-140 413 (Chandigarh), India
*(e-mail:; Mobile : 85668 42214)
(Received: June 20, 2022; Accepted: July 17, 2022)


Forensic palynology has been important in criminal investigation since the 1950s and often provides
evidence that is vital in identifying suspects and securing convictions. Soil is commonly used in forensic
casework to provide discriminatory power to link a suspect to a crime scene. Therefore, in the present
study, an attempt was made to find out the best method for pollen extraction. Soil samples from 10
different sites of Mohali were collected. The efficiency of previously used forensic laboratory protocols
for retrieving pollen including centrifugation method, acetolysis method, and density separation method
was tested. It was found that Bromine density separation method was found to be the best suitable
method as compared to other methods for extraction. The present study is thought to be helpful in
extracting pollens from soil or cloth substrates and help the investigating officers to link victim suspect
or crime scene with each other.
Key words : Forensic science, palynology, biology, soil examination, microscopic techniques, botany