Volume 49, Issue 3 (May 2004)

    A Preliminary Investigation of the Stages of Adipocere Formation

    (Received 2 July 2003; accepted 22 November 2003)

    Published Online: March

    CODEN: JFSOAD

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    Abstract

    Adipocere is a postmortem decomposition product which forms from a body's adipose tissue. This study aimed to chemically demonstrate the process of conversion from adipose tissue to adipocere. Samples of adipocere were collected from pig cadavers that were allowed to decompose for varying intervals. Samples of soil were collected from beneath the cadavers and analyzed to determine the leaching effect of adipocere. Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) was used to quantify the fatty acid composition of pig adipocere. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) was used as a confirmatory test and to identify other components such as triglycerides and calcium salts of fatty acids. The study demonstrates the process of adipocere formation and the stages of formation through which the process passes using chemical techniques.


    Author Information:

    Dent, BB
    University of Technology, Sydney,

    Stuart, BH
    University of Technology, Sydney,

    Dadour, IR
    Centre for Forensic Science, University of Western Australia,

    Forbes, SL
    Centre for Forensic Science, University of Western Australia,


    Stock #: JFS2002230

    ISSN: 0022-1198

    DOI: 10.1520/JFS2002230

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    Author
    Title A Preliminary Investigation of the Stages of Adipocere Formation
    Symposium , 0000-00-00
    Committee E30