Age estimation forensics conference welcomes world expert

Professor Roberto Cameriere

Tue, 26 Apr 2016 12:50:00 BST

“…there is an urgent need for a reliable method to determine the age of undocumented migrants and in the identification of terror victims in the Middle East…”

teeth THE migrant crisis has meant there is an urgent need for a reliable method to determine the age of undocumented individuals.  For example, if it can be shown that an unaccompanied refugee is under 18, then asylum must be granted.  Also, age estimation is an important factor in the identification of terror victims in the Middle East.

The Italian scientist Professor Roberto Cameriere has invented a technique for estimating age by interpreting dental X-rays.  The subject of numerous scholarly articles, the method – based on the fact that the third molar is crucial in showing the age of individuals in late adolescence – is being tested and adopted globally.  It has been shown that the accuracy rate is well over 90 per cent.  Now the professor comes to the University of Huddersfield to head a UK workshop that will explore his developments.

‌The two-day event – held on May 13-14 – will also enable forensic professionals and students to gain practical experience of age estimation via dental data.

A‌gEstimation Project

The University of Huddersfield is the academic home of Dr Stefano Vanin (pictured below on Italian television), who is Reader in Forensic Biology.  ‌Internationally known for his expertise in the use of evidence provided by insect infestation of cadavers, Dr Vanin has now incorporated Professor Cameriere’s methods in his research.  For example, Dr Vanin is poised to help Iraqi authorities in the identification of victims of Islamic State.  Also, his PhD student Ashref Dardouri is investigating the use of dental evidence.

Dr Stefano Vanin Dr Vanin hosts the University of Huddersfield workshop, which will be held in association with the AgEstimation Project headed by Professor Cameriere, who is based at the University of Macerata in Italy.

In addition to a keynote address by Professor Cameriere and a joint paper with his Macerata colleague Dr Luz Andrea Velandia Palatio, the first day of the workshop will include a talk by Dr Vanin on the statistical dimension to age estimation.  Also, the University of Huddersfield’s Dr Anna Williams will discuss anthropological methods for estimating age.

The second day of the workshop will include practical sessions based around dental X-rays, plus discussions of case studies.

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