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Department of Communications/
News Bureau
22 Davis Hall, 10 Lippitt Road, Kingston, RI 0288
Phone: 401-874-2116 Fax: 401-874-7872

URI Forensic Science Partnership to present lecture
by expert on hair analysis
Scientist from Armed Forces Institute of Pathology
to speak April 19

KINGSTON, R.I. -- April 18, 2001 -- Kathryn S. Kalasinsky, a forensic scientist for the U.S. military, will discuss hair analysis as a way to detect drug abuse Thursday, April 19 as part of the University of Rhode Island’s Forensic Science Partnership Seminar Series.

Kalasinsky, of the Division of Forensic Toxicology, Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, will speak at the Kingston Campus’ Pastore Hall, Room 124 from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Her talk is free and open to the public.

Kalasinsky said hair has become a popular biological matrix for the analysis of drugs. It is the only matrix that has long-term drug retention data, and the hair root bulb can give information of the drug distribution at the time of death for fatal cases. The other biological matrices yield only short-term information.

She said hair has many advantages for use as an abused drug indicator but also has many severe drawbacks. The primary disadvantage is that the kinetics of drug incorporation into hair is not known. Sampling, analysis and interpretation are all critical aspects of drug abuse determination from hair. Considerations for specimen collection, chemical/instrumental analysis and the interpretation of the data will be reviewed.

Kalasinsky earned her bachelor and master of science degrees from the University of South Carolina. She has more than 20 years experience in the fields of environmental and forensic toxicology. After many years of service in state government and industry, Kalasinsky began working for the federal government at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology in 1991 where she is the chief of research and education for the Division of Forensic Toxicology in the Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner. Kalasinsky is well known for her many applications of spectroscopy to solving forensic problems primarily for drug questions. She has more than 150 publications and presentations in the field and is currently serving on the editorial boards of three spectroscopy journals. Kalasinsky has served as President of the Coblentz Society and the Society for Applied Spectroscopy. She is the recipient of the 1995 Irving Sunshine Award for Outstanding Research in Forensic Toxicology from the American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

For Information: Jimmie Oxley 401-874-874-2103, Dave Lavallee 401-874-2116

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