Post mortem interval and decomposition rates : biological observations and mathematical analysis Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/0p096b17w

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  • Entomological evidence can be used for estimating post mortem interval (PMI). Decomposition studies have been conducted throughout the world and these studies have demonstrated that insect succession generally follows a similar pattern at a taxonomic level, specifically family, but varies at the genus and species levels with respect to geographic and seasonal differences. Insect succession data developed in one region cannot be used generally to estimate PMI in another region. Research has been conducted in a few regions of North America, but at this time there is no known forensic decomposition data for Northwestern Oregon. OBJECTIVES: (1) establish a preliminary insect succession model that can be used by regional law enforcement personal to establish PMI and (2) present a standardized mathematical model that provides a basis for the empirical analysis and comparison of decomposition rates from different regions. RESULTS: Calliphoridae fly species, L. illustris, was the first insect species to arrive and did so in less than 10 minutes PMI. L. illustris, ovipositing took place 6 hours PMI, thus starting the time clock that measures PMI. Secondly, our mathematical analysis gives indication that decomposition has been over simplified. Decomposition has several parameters that have not been elicited; therefore, the next step in our decomposition rate research is to analyze the characteristics of the maggots mass separately from the decomposing carcass. Such controlled experiments would provide valuable understanding of the dynamics of carcass decay.
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