The Detection of Latent Fingermarks on Porous Surfaces Using Amino Acid Sensitive Reagents: A Review

Renee Jelly, Emma Patton, Chris Lennard, Simon Lewis, Kieran Lim

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73 Citations (Scopus)


The introduction of ninhydrin treatment as a chemical technique for the visualisation of latent fingermarks on porous surfaces revolutionised approaches to forensic fingermark examination. Since then, a range of amino acid sensitive reagents has been developed and such compounds are in widespread use by law enforcement agencies worldwide. This paper reviews the development and use of these reagents for the detection of latent fingermarks on porous surfaces. A brief overview is provided, including an historical background, forensic significance, and a general approach to the development of latent fingermarks on porous surfaces. This is followed by a discussion of specific amino acid sensitive treatments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)128-142
Number of pages15
JournalAnalytica Chimica Acta
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2009


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