Author(s): Ritz S, Stock R, Schtz HW, Kaatsch HJ, Ritz S, Stock R, Schtz HW, Kaatsch HJ
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Abstract Determination of age at death on the basis of aspartic acid racemization in dentin is one of the most reproducible and accurate methods. In Germany, age estimation by this method has so far generally not been applied to living persons, since the extraction of a tooth exclusively for age estimation when it is not medically indicated is regarded as ethically and legally problematic. The development of a biopsy technique applicable to dentin took place against this background. Testing the technique and analysis of dentinal biopsy specimens revealed that the biopsy technique is a low-risk procedure that causes only minor discomfort to the affected person. It is readily practicable and facilitates standardized specimen removal. The relationship between the extent of aspartic acid racemization in dentinal biopsy specimens and age is very close, facilitating age estimation. A prerequisite for accurate results is the performance of biopsies under strictly standardized conditions. If this is guaranteed, age determination on the basis of aspartic acid racemization in dentinal biopsy specimens appears to be superior in precision to most other methods in living persons and can be used for all age groups.
This article was published in Int J Legal Med
and referenced in Journal of Forensic Research