Burned bones project at ISIS

It is no secret that one of the major objectives of the HOT project is to better understand heat-induced changes on human skeletal remains. This week, we are giving a major step to achieve that goal by using inelastic neutron scattering to document changes in both unburned bones and experimentally burned bones.
After a successful application, beamtime was attributed by ISIS at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (UK) to our project from the 4th to the 8th of November of 2015 to use the MAPS instrument. Maria Paula Marques (PI), Luís Batista de Carvalho and David Gonçalves, along with ISIS instrument scientist Stewart Parker, are making the analyses which can be followed live at the ISIS website. Visit the website to know more about the proton accelerator that we are using.

II Conference of the National Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences

Research under the HOT project was presented in II INMLCF that took place on the 29th and 30th of October. The following communications were presented:

Cimentocronologia: Estimativa de idade à morte em dentes queimados
Santos I, Gouveia M, Cunha E, Gonçalves D

Diagnose sexual em dentes humanos queimados: uma abordagem experimental sobre as mudanças induzidas pelo calor nas dimensões dentárias
Gouveia M, Santos I, Santos AL, Gonçalves D

Discriminação de indivíduos em vestígios humanos queimados e dispersos usando espectroscopia vibracional
Makhoul C, Amarante A, Batista de Carvalho L, Cunha E, Gonçalves D

Bone collagen as a factor for heat-induced warping was investigated in a new MSc thesis

Knowing the pre-burning condition of human remains is of critical importance for both archaeological and forensic science. Recently, this topic was innovatively addressed in a MSc thesis by Ana Vassalo. This research was carried out within the HOT project.

While the paper in English does not come out, you may download the thesis (in Portuguese) here.

Cementochronology was the focus of a new MSc project

A brilliant thesis, developed within the HOT project, on the potential of cementochronology for age at death estimation based on burned human skeletal remains was recently defended by Inês Santos under the Masters on Human Evolution and Biology at the Department of Life Sciences of the University of Coimbra.

The thesis was presented in Portuguese and is available for download here. A paper in English will soon be submitted as well. We’ll let you know when it is published!

 

New MSc Thesis on Burned Teeth

Márcia Gouveia brilliantly defended her thesis focusing on the potential of odontometric features for sex estimation based on burned remains. This research was carried out under the Masters on Human Evolution and Biology at the Department of Life Sciences of the University of Coimbra. It is also part of the investigation developed within the HOT project.

The thesis was presented in Portuguese and can be downloaded here. Expectantly, a paper written in English will be soon submitted. We’ll keep you updated on this!

II Bioanthropological Meeting

The HOT project participated in the II Bioanthropological meeting at the University of Coimbra (29th and 30th of May). Four poster presentations were presented:

The potential of cementochronology for age-at-death estimation in burned teeth
Santos I, Gouveia M, Cunha E, Gonçalves D

Evaluation of the potential of odontometry for sex estimation in burned human skeletal remains
Gouveia M, Santos I, Santos AL, Gonçalves D

The protocol for the preparation of burned identified skeletons of the CEI/XXI collection
Makhoul C, d’Oliveira Coelho J, Gouveia M, Santos I, Vassalo A, Ferreira MT, Cunha E, Gonçalves D

Warping in burned human skeletal remains: assessing the influence of bone collagen through vibrational spectroscopy
Coelho J, Cunha E, Gonçalves D

International Symposium on Anthropology and Natural Disasters

The HOT project attended the International Symposium on Anthropology and Natural Disasters that was held at the University of Coimbra on the 17th and 18th of April. We participated with the following presentations in this multidisciplinary meeting:

The Hot Topic of Burned Human Skeletal Remains: Coimbra’s contribution to Forensic Anthropology (both podium and poster presentations)
Gonçalves D, Coelho J, Gouveia M, Makhoul C, Santos I, Vassalo A, Santos AL, Batista de Carvalho L, Cunha E

Pioneering the Collection of Identified Burned Skeletons (poster presentation)
Gonçalves D, Ferreira MT, Cunha E