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The Decomposition of Human Remains

A Biochemical Perspective
  • Robert H. Powers
Chapter
Part of the Forensic Science and Medicine book series (FSM)

Abstract

The end result of decomposition of humans is more intimately familiar and perhaps of greater interest to forensic pathologists than to any other group whose duties include the evaluation and investigation of postmortem remains on a routine basis. From such remains, the forensic pathologist may be asked to make an evaluation of the cause and manner of death and, perhaps, how long the body had been in situ. These determinations may be challenging, even for the experienced investigator, depending on the condition and location of the remains. The extent, pattern, and nature of decomposition in a specific circumstance may be of great significance and utility in the forensic investigation of a death. Conclusions and inferences drawn from the investigation can be the subject of scrutiny, consideration, and documentation.

Keywords

Anaerobic Glycolysis Human Remains Catabolic Enzyme Forensic Pathologist Molecular Cell Biology 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc., Totowa, NJ 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert H. Powers
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Scientific Services, Controlled Substances/Toxicology LaboratoryConnecticut Department of Public SafetyHartford

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