Traces of lead in teeth reveal person's origin
A new study has revealed that trace amounts of lead in modern and historical human teeth can give clues about where they came from.
According to the study led by University of Florida geology researcher George D. Kamenov, if an unidentified decomposed body is found, testing the lead in the teeth could immediately help focus the investigation on a certain geographic area, which would help law enforcement to avoid wasting resources checking for missing persons in the wrong places.
Kamenov said that pollution signal can be used to figure out where these people came from, tooth enamel, which develops during childhood, locks in the lead signals and preserves them and when one grows up, they record the signal of the local environment, but if they move somewhere else, their isotope will be distinct from the local population.
The study was published in the Science of The Total Environment.
(Posted on 01-08-2014)