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DNA analysis of elephant ivory of illegal trade was handled in this work. The speciation and geographical origin of nine specimens of elephant ivory were requested by the police. Without national authorization, the suspect had purchased processed ivory seals from January to May, 2011 by Internet transactions from a site in a neighboring country. The DNA of decalcified ivory evidences was isolated with QIAGEN Micro Kit. The total 844-904 base pair sized sequences of mitochondrial cytochrome b and D-loop region could be acquired using direct sequencing analysis. They were compared with the sequences registered in GenBank. It was confirmed that most specimens were likely from African forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis), one from African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) and one from Asian elephant (Elephas maximus). Analysis of the mitochondrial hypervariable D-loop region sequence of elephants verified that one African savanna elephant might be from South Africa and one Asian elephant from Laos. Cytochrome b and D-loop region located in the mitochondrial DNA resulted in the successful determination of elephant DNA from nine processed ivory specimens. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd and Faculty of Forensic and Legal Medicine. All rights reserved.


Eun-jung Lee, Yang-han Lee, Seo-hyun Moon, Nam-ye Kim, Soon-hee Kim, Moon-sik Yang, Dong-ho Choi, Myun-soo Han. The identification of elephant ivory evidences of illegal trade with mitochondrial cytochrome b gene and hypervariable D-loop region. Journal of forensic and legal medicine. 2013 Apr;20(3):174-8

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PMID: 23472798

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