MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A university professor from Alabama will share in a more than $530,000 grant for forensic research on the decomposition of human remains.

Dr. Gulnaz Javan of Alabama State University in Montgomery will work on the project with a researcher from the University of Chicago, Dr. Jack Gilbert of the Earth Microbiome Project.

A statement from Alabama State says researchers are trying to develop a catalog to document tiny organisms called microbes that live on decomposing remains. The goal is to help in death investigations.

The two-year research project begins Jan. 1. Javan says the grant is the first one awarded to the forensic science program at Alabama State.