Published on: 04-03-2017

Dear TIAFT Friends,

Last week, I was in the US to attend the 69th AAFS meeting in New Orleans and was delighted to meet many TIAFT and SOFT friends including 5 board members of TIAFT. As you know, the AAFS meeting was huge with more than 4,000 participants from 58 countries. The theme of this year was ‘Our Future Reflects Our Past; the Evolution of Forensic Science.’ The toxicology session was very well organized by Dr. Nikolas Lemos. He is a fantastic leader. There was a special lecture of The Healing Properties of Navajo Ceremonies by Lori Arviso Alvond, MD, Chief, Surgical Services, Banner Page Hospital in Page, AZ. She was the one who gave a special talk when we had a joint meeting of TIAFT and SOFT in 1998 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Regarding the scientific program, there were 36 oral and 30 poster presentations in new psychoactive substances (NPS), drugs and driving, analytical methods, a multidisciplinary session, general forensic toxicology and pediatric postmortem toxicology. The multidisciplinary session was a combination of pathology/biology/toxicology, and it was very interesting. I was quite impressed by the session of postmortem pediatric toxicology, in which the discussion between pathologists and toxicologists was very well received by each side. It was a great moment to share ideas, communicate and learn from each other.  

In 2017, we have numerous excellent events ahead of us.

Firstly, the 55th annual meeting will be held in Boca Raton, Florida in the USA as the 2017 SOFT-TIAFT joint meeting under the leadership of Ruth Winecker and Dan Anderson with the theme of Science, Sunshine, & Social networking. It will be another great meeting with friends of SOFT and beautiful weather in Florida. I am looking forward to seeing all of you in Boca Raton. When I met the president of SOFT, Dr. Bruce Goldberger in New Orleans last week, he extended his welcome and was very excited to have the joint meeting with TIAFT.

Secondly, the regional meeting of TIAFT will be held in Romania with the 17th Congress of The Romanian Society of Forensic Medicine in the fourth week of May. This year, the Romanian Society of Forensic Medicine will celebrate its 125th anniversary and be the host of the TIAFT regional meeting. It will be a great honor for us to be there for their special occasion. The board will have a mid-year board meeting, while giving lectures and sharing ideas in Romania at the regional meeting. I would like to take this opportunity to express our appreciation to Dr. Bogdan Malinescu and his wonderful team for preparing the meeting. It will be a great chance for us to promote TIAFT to toxicologists in this region.

In the fall this year, the 13th regional meeting of Latin America will be held in Columbia. I will inform you the date after it is fixed.

There are many upcoming deadlines to remember. For the annual meeting in Boca Raton, the deadline for workshop proposals will be 15 March, abstracts 15 April, and registration opens 24 April 2017. Please visit the SOFT website ( for detailed information.

Very importantly, please remember that the deadline of submitting your application for a Standard and DCF travel fund will be 15 May. As I informed you, from this year the grant will be given to both standard and DC members. If you need financial support from TIAFT, please apply for it. The information is available on the website. I am looking forward to having many applications from both sides.

I also encourage the labs in countries to apply for the analytical method grant. As I mentioned before, it is also open for both labs in standard and DC. Please take an opportunity to develop an analytical method for your work with help from TIAFT.

In March, you will receive a mail ballot regarding the term limit of board members by our secretary, Dan for your voting on this matter. The final text of the amendment proposal on the constitution was on the last issue of Bulletin. Because the adoption of amendments requires a two-thirds majority of full members casting a mail ballot and the returned ballots must exceed 10% of the total full membership, your participation will be greatly appreciated.

Your contribution to TIAFT is invaluable and always appreciated.

Once again thank you and Happy New Year everyone.

Dr. Heesun Chung,
President, TIAFT