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J Forensic Dent Sci. 2019 Jan-Apr;11(1):11-15. doi: 10.4103/jfo.jfds_85_18.

Ascertaining of age by Raman spectroscopic analysis of apical dentin - A forensic study.

Author information

Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, Tamil Nadu Government Dental College and Hospital, Affiliated to Tamil Nadu Dr. M.G.R. Medical University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India.
Department of Medical Physics, College of Engineering, Guindy, Anna University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India.



Age estimation in forensics employ various methods of which Raman microspectroscopy provides a noninvasive method by assessing various parts of dentin.

Aim and Objectives:

The aim of this study is to ascertain the age of carious tooth using Raman spectra of apical dentin and to correlate the similarity of the spectra in a defined age group.

Settings and Design:

Teeth of known age from Indian population (n=48) and morphology (incisors, canine, premolars, molars) indicated for extraction due to caries were allocated into four groups, i.e., Group A (21-30 years), Group B (31-40 years), Group C (41-50 years) and Group D (51-60 years).

Materials and Methods:

Teeth were sectioned and the apical 2 mm of dentin was examined by a Raman microspectroscopy machine for spectra from 400 cm-1 to 1500 cm-1, and peak at phosphate group at 963 cm-1 was taken for statistical analysis.

Statistical Analysis Used:

The data were analyzed using IBM SPSS version 20.0.


Pearson's correlation to test the strength of linear relation of the spectra of the teeth within an age group showed an "r" value approaching 1. One-way ANOVA to test the difference between means of spectrum values obtained between the four age groups was statistically significant at P < 0.05.


Raman spectroscopic analysis of apical dentin of teeth affected by caries can also be used to estimate the age and the Raman spectra obtained differed for different age groups, and the same can be advocated as an alternative method to ascertain age in forensic dentistry.


Age determination; Raman spectrum; dentin; forensic dentistry

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