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Importance of Forensic Entomology Essay

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When investigating a case there are many different things to look for and inspect. In the event that there is a dead body found they must search for the cause of death, any wounds, the time of death, a possible suspect, and much more. One aspect of an investigation that is not usually heard of or known to many people is the forensic entomology or studying the bugs found within the body. “Forensic entomology is the study of insects for a medico-legal use” [1]. This is something that can actually be of great use to an investigation and can tell a lot more than one may think. There are many different bugs or insects that may be found in, with, or around a body. After much studying of the insects investigators have learned that the most valuable thing bugs bring to the table is being able to get an accurate time of death (TOD). There are a few different types of insects that are used when looking at the TOD of a body. The most common insects used are Calliphoridae or blowflies, and Coleoptera or beetles [2]. These two bugs are used in two very different ways and methods. Not only are the methods used different but also they are used at different time intervals of finding a corpse. The blowflies are generally the first animals to arrive at any scene where a body is present. They will generally arrive within hours and even minutes depending on the situation and if body fluids are spilled out. Beetles on the other hand are not found till later on in the decay process. Although, there are many different tools an investigator may use to determine the post mortem interval (PMI) of a body, over the last several years of studying medico-legal professionals have discovered that using forensic entomology can get the PMI down to within a one day...


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[5] Nuorteva P, Tedeschi CG, Eckert WG, Tedeschi LG et al. Sarcosaprophagous insects as forensic indicators, Forensic medicine and environmental hazards. Forensic Science International; 2:1072-1095.

[6] http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0379073801004108
[7] Oliveira HG, Gomes G, Morlin Jr JJ, Von Zuben CJ et al. The effect of Buscopan on the development of the blow fly chrysomya megacephala. Journal of Forensic Sciences 2009; 54:202–206.
[8] Souza CM, Lima CG, Alves-Jr MJ, Arrais-Silva WW, Giorgio S, Linhares AX, Thyssen PJ et al. Standardization of histological procedures for the detection of toxic substances by immunohistochemistry in dipteran larvae of forensic importance. Journal of Forensic Sciences 2013; 58:1015–1021.
[9] Byrd JH, Peace MR. Entomotoxicology: drugs, toxins, and insects, in forensic Chemistry. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons 2011



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