Genetic analyzer-dependent DNA methylation detection and its application to existing age prediction models

Moon Hyun So, Hwan Young Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


DNA methylation is the most promising biomarker for estimating human age. There are various methods used for analyzing DNA methylation. Among those, the SNaPshot assay-based method provides a semi-quantitative measurement of DNA methylation using capillary electrophoresis on genetic analyzers. However, DNA methylation measures produced using different types of genetic analyzers have never been compared, although differences in methylation values can directly affect age estimates. To evaluate the differences between the results generated by different genetic analyzers, we analyzed the same blood, saliva, and control methylated DNA using three genetic analyzers—the Applied Biosystems 3130, 3500, and SeqStudio—and compared the methylation values at five CpG sites: ELOVL2, FHL2, KLF14, MIR29B2C, and TRIM59. The methylation value at each of the five CpG sites decreased in the order 3130, 3500, and SeqStudio. The differences in the results produced by the different genetic analyzers resulted in significant errors when applying the 3500 and SeqStudio data to a previous age estimation model constructed using the 3130 Genetic Analyzer data. Therefore, DNA methylation measurements from 3500 and SeqStudio were corrected using the regression functions obtained by plotting the DNA methylation data of one instrument versus the other to facilitate the application of DNA methylation data from one instrument to the age prediction model based on other instruments. The age prediction accuracy obtained by applying corrected 3500 and SeqStudio data to the existing age estimation model was as high as observed in the 3130 data.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1497-1506
Number of pages10
Issue number14-15
StatePublished - Aug 2021


  • Age
  • DNA methylation
  • Forensic
  • Genetic analyzer


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