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In the article we present results of the studies in cases of death with a long agonal period to determine the length of the agony.

Objectives. The task was to examine the features of oxidative modification of serum proteins in cases of deaths with a long agonal period.

Material and methods. In all experiments we analyzed the liquid blood sampled from 54 corpses of persons of both sexes who died from the violent and natural death in age of 13 to 89 years. The assessment of the oxidative modification of proteins (OMP) was performed by the level of carbonyl derivatives detected in the reaction with 2,4-dinitrophenylhydrazine. The levels of absolute and relative (in terms of protein) total OMP in cases of long agonal period were compared with the counterpart levels in cases of the short agony. The duration of the agonу was determined using information about the circumstances of the case and investigative data with the permission of the authority ordered the forensic examination. The autopsy data also were taken into account.

Results. We revealed the dependence of the OMP level on the duration of the agonal period. The total OMP (in terms of protein) in cases of long agony have decreased by 45.46 %. The data obtained have showed that the parameters of the OMP, taking into account all the relevant factors, can be used to develop criteria for establishing the duration of the agonal period as well as to increase the evidence-based significance of medico-legal conclusions.

About the authors

I. S. Edelev

Department of Clinical Forensic Medicine, Privolzhskii Research Medical University

ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5852-3758

Russian Federation

Ivan S. Edelev, Privolzhskii Research Medical University

L. M. Obukhova

Department of Biochemistry, Privolzhskii Research Medical University


Russian Federation

Larisa M. Obukhova, Dr. Sci. (Biol.), Ass. Prof., Privolzhskii Research Medical University

N. A. Andriyanova

Nizhnii Novgorod Regional Bureau of Forensic Medicine


Russian Federation

[Natalya A. Andriyanova, Cand. Sci. (Chem.), Nizhnii Novgorod Regional Bureau of Forensic Medicine

N. S. Edelev

Nizhnii Novgorod Regional Bureau of Forensic Medicine; Department of Clinical Forensic Medicine, Privolzhskii Research Medical University

Author for correspondence.
ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7341-8833

Russian Federation

Nikolai S. Edelev, Dr. Sci. (Med.), Prof., Nizhnii Novgorod Regional Bureau of Forensic Medicine


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