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New approaches from the taxonomy and diversity of necrophagous flies (Diptera, Calyptratae): what biology has to offer to public safety in solving forensic cases

Grant number: 22/09029-0
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: October 01, 2022 - September 30, 2024
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Applied Zoology
Principal Investigator:Patricia Jacqueline Thyssen
Grantee:Patricia Jacqueline Thyssen
Host Institution: Instituto de Biologia (IB). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Associated researchers: Anderson Gaedke ; André Gardelino Savino ; Eduardo Carlo Amat Garcia ; Luz Miryam Gomez Piñerez ; Marcos Patrício Macedo ; Victor Wilson Botteon
Associated scholarship(s):23/03376-3 - Characterization and validation of molecular markers for the diagnosis of species of forensic importance, BP.TT


Insects and other arthropods, when associated with decaying corpses, can assist the progress or conclusion of an investigative process. The main applications within the forensic sciences relate to estimate the postmortem interval (PMI), to infer if a corpse was displacement, and to investigate possible cause of the death. To define these parameters, taxonomic identification is essential, as well as determining the age of the immature stages of the insect that was associated with a corpse. Some of the challenges in the use of entomological traces in expert practice are related to intrinsic factors such as the high diversity of fly species, mainly in the Neotropical region, as well as to the taxonomic impediment and the scarcity of basic information available to experts and the judicial system responsible for technical expertise at a crime scene. The development of identification keys for immature forms, obtaining DNA sequences for molecular identification, morphological characterization through morphometric interpretations for diagnosis and estimation of the insect's age, the generation of distribution maps and the creation of databases images, both for adult and immature specimens, which are the objectives of this proposal, in addition to being facilitating tools for forensic entomological expertise, may represent a major contribution to the knowledge of the diversity of South American necrophagous fauna. Additionally, they will serve subsidy for the promotion of further forensic studies. (AU)

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