Gene Expression and Biomarker Utility in Postmortem Samples

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory (BSRL) performs toxicological analyses for U.S. civil aviation accident victims who die as a result of that accident, and are designated by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) as having been in control, or potentially in control, of an aircraft at the time of accident. The samples that the BSRL receives are collected by medical examiners responsible for the locality in which the accident occurred. Once on hand, the samples are subject to toxicological analyses to determine the presence of a range of drug substances, and these findings are used to help determine a medical probable cause of the aviation accident. In order to determine how useful such aviation accident victim samples are for transcriptional biomarker screening, and the extent to which transcriptional indications of cannabis use can be detected in such samples, the BSRL's functional Genomics team will conduct transcriptomic profiling of a subset of deidentified THC-positive and THC-negative aviation accident victim samples to determine if those samples provide a suitable RNA source for sequencing-based analyses, if expression of certain genes exhibit over or underexpression in correlation with the presence of THC, these expression profiles may be useful s supporting indicators of THC activity in samples to provide additional clarification to current toxicological analyses.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • RNA sequencing will be performed on total RNA extracted from THC positive and negative aviation accident victims subject to routine FAA toxicological analysis.


  • English


Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01844977
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Federal Aviation Administration
  • Files: RIP, USDOT
  • Created Date: May 9 2022 4:27PM