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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 217640 Find in a Library
Title: Epiphyseal Union Sequencing: Aiding in the Recognition and Sorting of Commingled Remains
Journal: Journal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:52  Issue:2  Dated:March 2007  Pages:277-285
Author(s): Maureen C. Schaefer M.A.; Sue M. Black Ph.D.
Date Published: March 2007
Page Count: 9
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined the sequence in which 21 of the body's epiphyses (end part of a long bone which is at first separated from the main part by cartilage, but which later becomes bone) unite to provide a reference for identifying inconsistent fusing patterns that indicate a commingling of the bones of two or more bodies.
Abstract: This study found that an understanding of the sequence in which the various epiphyses of the body unite assisted in the identification of inconsistent bone formation characteristics that might be observed when two or more bodies that varied in developmental status at death were found in the same assemblage of bones. The use of both "beginning" and "complete" sequence patterns in epiphyses provides a wider spectrum of evidence for detecting inconsistencies than either pattern would allow if used alone. This paper provides documentation of both modal sequence patterns, including all variation from the norm. The information is presented in clear figures in order to aid easy reference in the field. This study also adds to knowledge about human skeletal development. The study involved an analysis of the bones of 258 male individuals of Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim) descent who were between the ages of 14 and 30 when they died. Sequence order was determined for both "beginning" and "complete" union by comparing the fusing status of each epiphysis with each of the other 21 epiphyses. 2 figures, 6 tables, and 23 references
Main Term(s): Police policies and procedures
Index Term(s): Age determination; Bone analysis; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Death investigations; Forensic sciences; Investigative techniques; Mass murders; Victim identification
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