Discipline: Chemistry and Chemical Sciences
Subcategory: Chemistry (not Biochemistry)
Room: Exhibit Hall A
Nancy Flynn - University of Central Florida
Co-Author(s): Candice Bridge, University of Central Florida, FL; Brooke Baumgarten, University of Central Florida, FL; Santana Thomas, University of Central Florida, FL.
Research has shown an increase in condom use during sexual assaults.1,2 It is imperative that the underutilized trace evidence recovered from these crime scenes and sexual assault kits has a standard protocol for comparison and identification. At the National Center for Forensic Science, current research is being conducted to create that standard protocol for sexual lubricant analysis. This research has established standard methods of analysis and classification of lubricant and condom samples in their manufactured form resulting in the publication of the Sexual Lubricant Database. Laboratory based degradation is an integral addition to this research for more direct comparison of samples found in the field that have potentially been chemically altered by environmental and human influences. In order to conduct this analysis, procedures must first be established. The goal of the presented research was to devise a procedure for temperature-based degradation using both a hotplate and oven. Lubricant samples selected from the water-based, organic, and condom classes were heated up to 50, 150, and 250 degrees Celsius and reduced to 90, 75, 50, 25, and 10 percent of the original volume of 2 milliliters. At each reduction point, an aliquot of the sample was used to create 1 percent weight by volume solutions for analysis. It was determined that the procedure established for the hotplate would directly correlate to the procedure for the oven, therefore, a lubricant was selected for testing different methods of heating via the hotplate only. Once the optimum heating method was established, 1 sample from each lubricant class was selected and analyzed. The sample analysis was performed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, direct analysis in real time-high resolution mass spectrometry, and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy to determine the degradation trends of the major chemical constituents of each lubricant class. The results showed the chemical decomposition of theses constituents such as the depolymerization of polyethylene glycol and polymethylsioxane. Moving forward, temperature-based degradation will continue with 9 additional lubricants from each class and the hotplate procedure will be applied toward creating the oven procedure. The data collected from these degradation protocols will have a potential application toward comparison and identification of unknown samples. References: 1. Ayers, I.; Baker, K. K., A Separate Crime of Reckless Sex. Yale Law School Legal Scholarship Repository 2005. 2. O’Neal, E. N.; Decker, S. H.; Spohn, C.; Tellis, K., Condom use during sexual assault. J Forensic Leg Med 2013, 20 (6), 605-9.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): Funding provided by the National Institute of Justice [NIJ 2018-MU-BS-002] and supported by the State of Florida.
Faculty Advisor: Candice Bridge, email@example.com
Role: Conducted all experiments to established temperature-based degradation protocol, prepared and analyzed lubricant samples, as well as analyzing and interpreting data.