Elena Hughes
Osteologist , Staff

Elena Hughes is currently a PhD student in Anthropology at the University of Hawaiʻi Mānoa. She received her MA in Forensic Anthropology in 2018 from the University of Montana and her BS in Anthropology from Central Washington University in 2014. While getting her master's degree she participated in a field methods course for the recovery of human remains at the University of Tennessee Knoxville's Forensic Anthropology Research Center as well as assisted in the analysis of forensic remains in both open and cold cases from the Montana State Crime Lab. It was through this forensic casework that she became interested in postmortem alterations and tool mark analysis in bone which would later become the focus of both her master's and doctoral research. Her current research analyzes the variations in the creation and preservation of saw marks in bone when exposed to differing depositional environments. She anticipates that this data will help to determine a more accurate timeline of postmortem trauma resulting from acts of dismemberment. Her interests include biological anthropology, forensic anthropology, human osteology, skeletal trauma, and taphonomy.

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