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Despite their non-standardized documentation and interpretation, human bite marks are very useful in the legal arena. A literture review of case histories was undertaken to search for some basic dental traits that characterize bite marks successfully used to identify suspects in forensic cases. Information for eighteen cases indicated that the two dental traits that occurred most frequently, diastema and malposition of teeth, were usually sufficient to identify a suspect. The relative simplicity of these findings suggests questioning the necessity and cost-effectiveness of lengthy and complex analyses in many forensic cases.