Forensic Researchers Set Standards for X-Ray Identification of Bodies
Forensic researchers have for the first time established science-based standards for identifying human remains based on X-rays of an individual’s spine, upper leg or the side of the skull.
Study: Ancestral Background Can Be Determined by Fingerprints
A proof-of-concept study finds that it is possible to identify an individual’s ancestral background based on his or her fingerprint characteristics – a discovery with significant applications for law enforcement and anthropological research.
Researchers Can Trace Dust Samples Using Fungal DNA
Researchers have developed a statistical model that allows them to tell where a dust sample came from within the continental United States based on the DNA of fungi found in the sample. The work offers law enforcement a new forensic biology tool.
Study Upends Conventional Wisdom, Finds Significant Facial Variation in Pre-Columbian South America
Researchers have found significant differences in facial features between pre-Columbian peoples in Peru – disproving a longstanding perception that these groups were physically homogenous.
Can You Tell Which Skull Is Which?
A recent study from NC State forensic anthropologists found that even forensic experts have a hard time making a positive identification of human remains based on the shape of a person’s skull. Specifically, only 56 percent of forensic anthropology Ph.D.s […]
Face-to-Face: Skull Study Shows Variation of Pre-Columbian Cultures in Mexico
Analysis of the skulls of prehistoric peoples in Mexico reveals significant regional variation in the facial characteristics of indigenous populations – indicating that there were notable physical differences between geographically separate groups before the arrival of Europeans.
Cretaceous Cold Case No. 2, Part 1: It’s a Trap?
This is part one of the second post in a series called “Cretaceous Cold Cases” in which the science of taphonomy, or prehistoric forensics, is explained using fascinating cases from the files of Terry “Bucky” Gates, a research scientist with […]
A Guided Tour Of The Bone Lab – Or, Forensic Anthro 101
Last week, NC State hosted the ScienceOnline2012 conference, bringing together a wide variety of people with an interest in communicating about science. During the conference, I had the opportunity to lead a small group of attendees on a tour of […]
NC State forensic sciences: Research for the real world
NC State research doesn't live only in the lab: our forensic scientists have helped law enforcement close cases.
CSI: NC State
NC State experts unlock the secrets of soil samples, skulls, fibers and more to help law enforcement turn cold cases into convictions.