Printer Friendly

Teeth keep nuclear clue.

FALL-OUT from nuclear bomb tests carried out in the 1950s and 1960s has left its signature in the teeth of people around the world, scientists said today.

The discovery means that the nuclear explosions may have an unexpectedly useful spinoff - helping forensic scientists estimate when a dead person was born.

Dental enamel preserves a permanent record of the amount of radioactive material in the atmosphere at the time a tooth was formed.

By determining the levels of radioactive carbon-14, scientists can calculate the age of the tooth, and its owner.

The technique is accurate to within approximately 1.6 years, according to a report in the journal Nature.

Conventional methods of evaluating skeletal remains and tooth wear are accurate to within only five to 10 years in adults.

The scientists, led by Jonas Frisen from the Karolinska institute in Stockholm, said nuclear testing dramatically raised the amount of carbon14 in the atmosphere
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2005 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Sep 15, 2005
Previous Article:BIG MAC IS WATCHING; 12 CCTV cameras to beat the yobs.
Next Article:The Insider: Spotted.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2018 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters