International Journal of Legal Medicine | 2021
Developmental validation of the MGIEasy Signature Identification Library Prep Kit, an all-in-one multiplex system for forensic applications
Analyzing genetic markers in nuclear and mitochondrial genomes is helpful in various forensic applications, such as individual identifications and kinship analyses. However, most commercial kits detect these markers separately, which is time-consuming, laborious, and more error-prone (mislabelling, contamination, ...). The MGIEasy Signature Identification Library Prep Kit (hereinafter “MGIEasy identification system”; MGI Tech, Shenzhen, China) has been designed to provide a simple, fast, and robust way to detect appropriate markers in one multiplex PCR reaction: 52 autosomal STRs, 27 X-chromosomal STRs, 48 Y-chromosomal STRs, 145 identity-informative SNPs, 53 ancestry-informative SNPs, 29 phenotype-informative SNPs, and the hypervariable regions of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). Here, we validated the performance of MGIEasy identification system following the guidelines of the Scientific Working Group on DNA Analysis Methods (SWGDAM), assessing species specificity, sensitivity, mixture identification, stability under non-optimal conditions (degraded samples, inhibitor contamination, and various substrates), repeatability, and concordance. Libraries prepared using MGIEasy identification system were sequenced on a MGISEQ-2000 instrument (MGI Tech). MGIEasy-derived STR, SNP, and mtDNA genotypes were highly concordant with CE-based STR genotypes (99.79%), MiSeq FGx-based SNP genotypes (99.78%), and Sanger-based mtDNA genotypes (100%), respectively. This system was strongly human-specific, resistant to four common PCR inhibitors, and reliably amplified both low quantities of DNA (as low as 0.125 ng) and degraded DNA (~\u2009150 nt). Most of the unique alleles from the minor contributor were detected in 1:10 male-female and male-male mixtures; some minor Y-STR alleles were even detected in 1:1000 male-female mixtures. MGIEasy also successfully directly amplified markers from blood stains on FTA cards, filter papers, and swabs. Thus, our results demonstrated that MGIEasy identification system was suitable for use in forensic analyses due to its robust and reliable performance on samples of varying quality and quantity.