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New Security Measures for Medical Schools

University of California officials are considering inserting supermarket-style barcodes or radio frequency devices in cadavers to keep track of them.

U-C has been shaken lately by scandals involving the black-market sale of body parts. The barcode idea is one of a number of reforms U-C is proposing to reassure people that bodies donated to science will be used as intended and treated with respect.

In 1996, donors´ families sued the university, charging that the program had illegally disposed of thousands of bodies by cremating them along with dead lab animals and fetuses and dumping the ashes in the trash.

And in 1999, the director of the U-C Irvine program was fired after being accused of selling spines to a Phoenix hospital.