Investigating with the Microbial Clock

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 8,776
    New research from the University of Colorado Boulder suggests that the microbial clock may be a better indicator for time of death in forensics investigations than traditional methods.

    A new study led by the University of Colorado Boulder suggests that forensic scientists could use the microbial clock to determine time of death.  One of the first questions asked--which you would know if you watch Law and Order-is what time did the victim die?  But current techniques, like timing of last text messages, aren’t reliable.  A microbial clock is essentially succession of bacterial changes that occur postmortem as bodies move through the decay process.  And researchers say these patterns are consistent in corpses post-mortem, and this technique could be complementary to current techniques.