Dr. Levin to Present at the Society for Historical Archaeology

Dr. Levin examining the root canal of specimen JR1225B in the Department of Biomedical Engineering lab at the Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA.

The Society for Historical Archaeology has invited Martin D. Levin, DMD and D. Joshua Cohen, MD to present a lecture at their annual meeting, SHA 2017 Conference on Historical and Underwater Archaeology to be held on January 4-8, 2017 in Fort Worth, Texas. The title of the presentation is “A Detailed Analysis of the Dentition of Jamestown’s First Settlers.”

The lecture will highlight the work of archaeologists and an interdisciplinary team of researchers who are studying the skull and dentition of a 15-year-old boy (JR1225B) who appears to have been the victim of a battle with Native Americans during the initial settlement at Jamestown in 1607. Specimens recovered from the boy’s teeth and jaws yield clues about diet and other aspects of daily life in the 17th century.

Detailed study of the remains began with the morphological and temporal study of the skull and teeth using cone-beam computed tomography, intraoral radiography, micro computed, scanning electron microscopy, and Raman spectroscopy. The exposed root canal of the mandibular left central incisor and carious lesion provides a unique repository of particulate matter in the oral cavity and the associated intra-alveolar periapical lesion.

This research shows how advanced technologies can be used to characterize aspects of life and the disease state of skeletal remains.