Volume 36, Issue 3 (May 1991)
Individualization and Enamel Histology: A Case Report in Forensic Anthropology
The cranium of a native Indian child about six years old was found in 1979 near Taseko River, British Columbia, Canada. While the remains matched the report of a child missing for eight years in terms of race, age at death, locale, and elapsed time since death, the cranium and dentition were basically unidentifiable because of the claimed lack of medical or dental history. There was no dental work, and the parents were unknown or dead. We report the presence, in the dental enamel of the primary and secondary dentition, of stress markers, termed striae of Retzius, whose locations correspond well with anecdotal reports and recently discovered medical records which describe the timing of specific episodes of stress. The enhanced probability of personal identification from dental histological stress markers is evaluated.