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Advantage of Affinity Histochemistry Combined with Histology to Investigate Death Causes: Indications from Sample Cases

NCJ Number
236899
Journal
Journal of Forensic Sciences Volume: 56 Issue: 6 Dated: November 2011 Pages: 1620-1625
Author(s)
Stefano Bacci, Ph.D.; Beatrice DeFraia, M.D.; Paolo Romagnoli, M.D.; Aurelio Bonelli, M.D.
Date Published
November 2011
Length
6 pages
Annotation

This study examined mast cell histochemistry has been proposed in addition to classic histological methods to estimate the course of traumatic events before and after death.

Abstract

Mast cell histochemistry has been proposed in addition to classic histological methods to estimate the course of traumatic events before and after death. We have addressed the utility of this approach on nine victims of different types of trauma. Sections of wounded skin were stained with hematoxylin and eosin and with fluorescent avidin to tag mast cells. Mast cell numbers were evaluated by both direct and digitalized counts. Intact skin was used as control. The results on mast cells implemented the findings upon hematoxylin and eosin stain and helped to put the wounds and death in chronological sequence. Digitalized morphometry allowed to reduce intra- and inter-observer variation. We conclude that combined histological and histochemical analyses can be of practical use in forensic pathology that a preliminary setting of the reference values is needed for each laboratory, and that image analysis can be of help for the quantification of the results. (Published Abstract)

Date Published: November 1, 2011