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Holger Muggenthaler, T X Trinh, S Heinke, C Rode, S Schenkl, M Hubig, G Mall
Forensic experts often have to assess injury and fatality risks in the context of violent blunt force trauma. Maximum striking velocities in one- and two-handed strikes with a rod-like implement can be of particular interest. Current literature lacks studies addressing this problem. The purpose of this study was therefore to measure and analyse maximum striking velocities in one-handed and two-handed strikes in female and male volunteers. We hypothesised higher striking velocities in two-handed strikes compared to one-handed strikes...
March 15, 2018: International Journal of Legal Medicine
Dana Crooks, Nathaniel E Anderson, Matthew Widdows, Nia Petseva, Michael Koenigs, Charles Pluto, Kent A Kiehl
Cavum septum pellucidum (CSP) is a neuroanatomical variant of the septum pellucidum that is considered a marker for disrupted brain development. Several small sample studies have reported CSP to be related to disruptive behavior, persistent antisocial traits, and even psychopathy. However, no large-scale samples have comprehensively examined the relationship between CSP, psychopathic traits, and antisocial behavior in forensic samples. Here we test hypotheses about the presence of CSP and its relationship to psychopathic traits in incarcerated males (N=1432)...
March 12, 2018: Neuropsychologia
Geraldine Dowling, Pierce V Kavanagh, Hans-Georg Eckhardt, Brendan Twamley, Gary Hessman, Gavin McLaughlin, John O' Brien, Simon D Brandt
Nitrazolam and clonazolam are two designer benzodiazepines that are available from internet retailers and there is growing evidence suggesting that such compounds have the potential to cause severe adverse events. Information about tolerability in humans is scarce but typically, low doses can be difficult to administer for users when handling bulk material and variability of the active ingredient in tablet formulations can also be of a concern. Customs, toxicology and forensic laboratories are increasingly encountering designer benzodiazepines, both in tablet and powdered forms, and the unavailability of reference standards can impact on the ability to identify these compounds...
March 15, 2018: Drug Testing and Analysis
Alberto Zanatta, Luca Bezzi, Nicola Carrara, Cicero Moraes, Gaetano Thiene, Fabio Zampieri
Morgagni is considered the father of pathological anatomy. He died in 1771, 89 years old, and was buried in Saint Maxim church in Padua, where his wife and five of his 15 children were already buried. In 2011, an anthropological analysis confirmed that one of the skulls belonged to the oldest individuals among those found in Morgagni's tomb. A genetic analysis proved a kinship between this skull and the fragments of young individuals (one male and two females), supporting the hypothesis that they were Morgagni and his children...
March 14, 2018: Anthropologischer Anzeiger; Bericht über die Biologisch-anthropologische Literatur
William B Driskell, James R Payne
During the Deepwater Horizon blowout, unprecedented volumes of dispersant were applied both on the surface and at depth. Application at depth was intended to disperse the oil into smaller microdroplets that would increase biodegradation and also reduce the volumes buoyantly rising to the surface, thereby reducing surface exposures, recovery efforts, and potential stranding. In forensically examining 5300 offshore water samples for the Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) effort, profiles of deep-plume oil droplets (from filtered water samples) were compared with those also containing dispersant indicators to reveal a previously hypothesized but undocumented, accelerated dissolution of the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) in the plume samples...
March 11, 2018: Marine Pollution Bulletin
Leandro Nóbrega, Ricardo Jorge Dinis-Oliveira
New psychoactive substances (NPS), often referred as 'legal highs' or 'designer drugs', are derivatives and analogs of existing psychoactive drugs that are introduced in the recreational market to circumvent existing legislation on drugs of abuse. This work aims to review the state-of-the-art regarding chemical, molecular pharmacology, and in vitro and in vivo data on toxicokinetics of the potent synthetic cathinone α-pyrrolidinovalerophenone (α-PVP or flakka or zombie drug). Chemical, pharmacological, toxicological, and clinical effects of α-PVP were searched in PubMed (U...
March 14, 2018: Drug Metabolism Reviews
Erwin Schuringa, V E Heininga, Marinus Spreen, Stefan Bogaerts
Besides assessment of forensic patients' risk of future violence and criminogenic needs, knowledge on their responsivity to treatment is equally important. However, instruments currently used for risk assessment are not sensitive enough for treatment evaluation. Therefore, the Instrument for Forensic Treatment Evaluation (IFTE) was developed. The IFTE is a treatment evaluation tool, which uses the dynamic risk items of the Dutch risk assessment tool, the HKT-R (Historical, Clinical, Future-Revised). The IFTE has an extended answering scale, which makes it more sensitive for measuring change and enables clinicians to monitor patients' responsivity to treatment closely...
April 2018: International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology
Xiaochen Wang, Zhendong Hua, Zhaoguang Yang, Haipu Li, Huwei Liu, Bo Qiu, Honggang Nie
RATIONALE: Owing to the widespread abuse of new psychoactive substances (NPSs), developing a rapid, easily operable method to detect NPSs in oral fluid is of high priority. Easy collection and non-invasive nature make oral fluid samples suitable for on-site tests and forensic cases. Herein we report a rapid and sensitive method to screen and quantitate 11 new NPSs in oral fluid. METHOD: A low temperature plasma probe mass spectrometry (LTP-MS) was applied and to improve the signal intensity, thermally assisted desorption was employed...
March 14, 2018: Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry: RCM
Juan Andrés Abin-Carriquiry, Marcela Martínez-Busi, Martín Galvalisi, Manuel Minteguiaga, José Pedro Prieto, María Cecilia Scorza
Adulteration is a common practice in the illicit drugs market, but the psychoactive and toxic effects provided by adulterants are clinically underestimated. Coca-paste (CP) is a smokable form of cocaine which has an extremely high abuse liability. CP seized samples are sold adulterated; however, qualitative and quantitative data of CP adulteration in forensic literature is still scarce. Besides, it is unknown if adulterants remain stable when CP is heated. This study was designed to report the chemical content of an extensive series of CP seized samples and to demonstrate the stability (i...
March 13, 2018: Neurotoxicity Research
Volker Vieth, Ronald Schulz, Walter Heindel, Heidi Pfeiffer, Boris Buerke, Andreas Schmeling, Christian Ottow
PURPOSE: To explore the possibility of determining majority via a morphology-based examination of the epiphyseal-diaphyseal fusion by 3.0 T magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), a prospective cross-sectional study developing and applying a new stage classification was conducted. MATERIALS AND METHODS: 344 male and 350 female volunteers of German nationality between the ages of 12-24 years were scanned between May 2013 and June 2015. A 3.0 T MRI scanner was used, acquiring a T1-weighted (T1-w) turbo spin-echo sequence (TSE) and a T2-weighted (T2-w) TSE sequence with fat suppression by spectral pre-saturation with inversion recovery (SPIR)...
March 13, 2018: European Radiology
Verica Radojicic, Milica Keckarevic Markovic, Feđa Puac, Miljana Kecmanovic, Dusan Keckarevic
Casings represent common evidence in a forensic laboratory, due to high frequency of firearms usage during perpetration of criminal offenses. Possible DNA evidence from casings is compromised by degradation, inhibition, and initial low-quantity deposition of biological material. For that reason, in the last 15 years, scientists have been trying to optimize procedures for recovery and amplification of DNA possibly present on its surface. In this study, we share our 12-year experience done on a total of 698 casework casings, comparing two DNA recovery methods commonly used-soaking and swabbing, as well as efficacy of two commercially available DNA amplification kits (AmpFLSTR® Identifiler® and AmpFLSTR® Identifiler® Plus kits)...
March 13, 2018: International Journal of Legal Medicine
Emily Simonds, Charlotte Wilson, Joe Iwanaga, Tyler Laws, Gary Holley, Rod J Oskouian, R Shane Tubbs
Medical imaging techniques have led to great advances in clinical anatomy and forensic pathology. New and emerging technologies allow healthcare professionals to view and understand the human body from different perspectives. This gives way to new and improved interventions, treatment plans, and an overall understanding of the human body. Herein, we present a comprehensive review of the various medical imaging equipment used in cadaveric studies along with their individual strengths and limitations.
January 7, 2018: Curēus
Nazli Bozman, Cemal Gurkan, Huseyin Sevay, Damla Kanliada Demirdov, Filiz Ozbas-Gerceker
BACKGROUND: Southeastern Anatolia is the smallest, yet the most densely populated region among the seven major geographic constituents of Turkey. Situated in the Upper Mesopotamia, Southeastern Anatolia was also the northernmost extension of the Fertile Crescent, which is often considered as the earliest cradle of civilisation. AIM: To investigate the autosomal STR polymorphisms associated with a truly representative population sample pool from Southeastern Anatolia...
March 14, 2018: Annals of Human Biology
Susan C Shelmerdine, John Ciaran Hutchinson, Safa Al-Sarraj, Nat Cary, Tim Dawson, Daniel Du Plessis, Paul G Ince, Siobhan McLaughlin, Liina Palm, Colin Smith, Neil Stoodley, Rick van Rijn, Owen J Arthurs, Thomas S Jacques
AIMS: To develop an expert consensus statement regarding appropriate clinical and forensic post-mortem neurological imaging. METHODS: An expert panel of clinicians were recruited from registered members of the British Neuropathological Society (BNS) and the International Society of Forensic Radiology and Imaging (ISFRI) with post-mortem expertise. Following a focus group meeting, 16 core statements were incorporated into an online modified Delphi survey and each panellist was asked to score their level of agreement...
March 13, 2018: Neuropathology and Applied Neurobiology
Concetta Federico, Debora Lombardo, Noemi La Porta, Anna Maria Pappalardo, Venera Ferrito, Francesco Lombardo, Salvatore Saccone
The arrival of arthropods at a corpse exhibits specific temporal patterns, and Diptera play a key role in the initial stages of the decomposition process. Thus, the correct species assignment of the insect larvae found on a decomposing body is an important step in forensic investigations. Here, we describe a molecular procedure to define the species at larval age found on a corpse more quickly and easily than current systems. Our method involves a unique PCR amplification of a DNA segment within the evolutionarily conserved wingless gene, involved in embryo development...
March 6, 2018: Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine
Damian Jacob Sendler
INTRODUCTION: Erotic asphyxiation is a sexual phenomenon in which one partner reduces the other person's brain oxygen level through strangulation. This study analyzes deaths caused by sexually-motivated strangulation to cases of homicidal choking - summarizing criminal penalties for defendants, depending on the presence of drugs, or alcohol intoxication. METHODS: The mode of analysis involves three sources of data. First, a retrospective chart review of our clinics' two recent cases...
March 10, 2018: Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine
Jonatan Hedlund, Jonas Forsman, Joakim Sturup, Thomas Masterman
BACKGROUND AND AIM: Alcohol is associated with violent behavior, although little is known regarding to what extent alcohol increases homicide risk. We aimed to estimate risks of homicide offending and victimization conferred by the presence of ethanol in blood by using toxicological data from homicide victims and offenders and from controls who had died in vehicle-related accidents. METHODS: From nationwide governmental registries and databases, forensic-toxicological results were retrieved for victims (n = 200) and offenders (n = 105) of homicides committed during the years 2007-2009 and individuals killed in vehicle-related accidents (n = 1629) during the years 2006-2014...
March 6, 2018: Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine
Léonard Fumeaux, Maria Pia Scarpelli, Camilla Tettamanti, Cristian Palmiere
Liver function tests have been investigated in the forensic setting in several biological fluids collected at autopsy. Nevertheless, the results of these investigations have provided diverging information on postmortem stability of liver function markers and postmortem reliability of liver function assessment. The first aim of this study was to determine gamma-glutamyltransferase, alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase, total bilirubin, total proteins, and albumin in antemortem and postmortem serum samples in a series of cases that underwent forensic investigations and had both samples available...
March 10, 2018: Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine
M N Arslan, Ç Kertmen, I Esen Melez, D O Melez
Traumatic asphyxia is a rare clinical syndrome usually caused by sudden and severe thoracic and/or thoracoabdominal compression. It presents with craniofacial cyanosis, petechiae, and subconjunctival haemorrhages. The present study employed a postmortem retrospective methodology to analyse autopsy findings and accompanying injuries in cases of death due to traumatic asphyxia. Four years of case files from a morgue department at a forensic medicine institute were searched and 53 cases of lethal traumatic asphyxia were found...
March 6, 2018: Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine
Cheryl A Krause-Parello, Michele Thames, Colleen M Ray, John Kolassa
Disclosure of child sexual abuse can be a stressful experience for the child. Gaining a better understanding of how best to serve the child, while preserving the quality of their disclosure, is an ever-evolving process. The data to answer this question come from 51 children aged 4-16 (M = 9.1, SD = 3.5), who were referred to a child advocacy center in Virginia for a forensic interview (FI) following allegations of sexual abuse. A repeated measures design was conducted to examine how the presence of a service-trained facility dog (e...
March 13, 2018: Journal of Child Sexual Abuse
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