Category Archives: Ancient DNA

Centuries-old DNA helps identify specific origins of slave skeletons found in Caribbean

BustamanteA newly developed genetic technique enabled researchers to sequence DNA from the teeth of 300-year-old skeletons, helping to pinpoint where in Africa three slaves had likely lived before being captured.

Mass Grave With 200 Skeletons Found Under Supermarket In Central Paris

Mass Graves ParisArchaeologists have made a strange and rather gruesome discovery under a supermarket in central Paris: an ancient mass grave containing the skeletal remains of more than 200 people.

Australian scientists use ancient DNA to trace origins of languages

ancient skeletonAustralian scientists have slipped another piece into the puzzle about human language development and it suggests that nearly half the world’s population may be more closely related than we think.
Analysis of ancient DNA has shed light on migration patterns, helping researchers trace the origins of some of the most widely spoken languages in the world.

ADP Forensic Evidence Department Identifies DNA Typing Of Archeological Bone Samples

old DNAThe Forensic Evidence Department at Abu Dhabi Police announced that it has succeeded in achieving a complete DNA profile match of two bone powder samples. One of the samples is approximately 400 years, the second sample dates back some 150 years. The Forensic Evidence Department at Abu Dhabi Police was one of three and 13 laboratories to have handled the samples respectively out of 18 laboratories from around the world.

Scan reveals 1,000-year-old mummified monk hidden in statue

buddhist monk statue with skeleton(CNN) — A golden statue of a sitting Buddha, smuggled from a temple in China to a market in the Netherlands, revealed an extraordinary secret — a 1,000-year-old mummified monk.

Scandinavian Team Searches for Indo-European Homeland through Kazakhstan DNA

sturla-ellingvagASTANA – A Scandinavian team has come to Kazakhstan in search of the common homeland of all Indo-European peoples, collecting bone fragments for analysis in the Centre for Geogenetics at the University of Copenhagen.

They Found Richard III. So Now What?

tdy_King_Richard_130204_vembedlarge456The last time Richard III was buried in Leicester, England, he had been taken from a battlefield, slung naked over a horse, stabbed in the buttocks with a dagger and thrown into a shallow grave. That was late August 1485. On Thursday, March 26, 2015, Richard will be buried again. This time will be different.

A New Theory on How Neanderthal DNA Spread in Asia

helix10In 2010, scientists made a startling discovery about our past: About 50,000 years ago, Neanderthals interbred with the ancestors of living Europeans and Asians.
Now two teams of researchers have come to another intriguing conclusion: Neanderthals interbred with the ancestors of Asians at a second point in history, giving them an extra infusion of Neanderthal DNA.

Bacterial DNA from the Black Death found in teeth

bacterialdnaBiologists at the University of Oslo are now making a giant effort to identify the relationship between climate change, rat infestations, and the many major plague epidemics throughout history. The knowledge may be used to predict the next plague outbreak.

Paleolithic skull in Israel may shed light on humans’ path from Africa

Partial skull(CNN)—Neanderthals, meet modern humans. Modern humans, say hello to Neanderthals.
Now would you two care for a date?
That was possible some 55,000 years ago in modern-day Israel, archaeologists announced this week — a find that they say could be significant, since it could shed light on when and how our modern-day ancestors moved from Africa into Europe and Asia.

55,000-Year-Old Skull Sheds Light on Earliest Human Migration

CaveLong ago, humans left their evolutionary cradle in Africa and passed through the Middle East on their way to Europe. Now scientists have found the first fossil remains that appear to document that journey, a partial skull from an Israeli cave.

Ancient Greek Tomb Contained at Least Five Corpses

Greek TombHuman bones found in a resplendent ancient tomb in northern Greece belong to at least five individuals, including an elderly woman and a baby, Greek officials said Monday. The announcement by the Culture Ministry was the latest twist in a high-profile excavation of a tomb dating back to the Alexander the Great era.

First DNA tests say Kennewick Man was Native American

Kennewick Man1SEATTLE (AP) — Nearly two decades after the ancient skeleton called Kennewick Man was discovered on the banks of the Columbia River, the mystery of his origins appears to be nearing resolution.
Genetic analysis is still under way in Denmark, but documents obtained through the federal Freedom of Information Act say preliminary results point to a Native-American heritage.

Finding and unearthing Spain’s mass graves

Skeletal evidenceACROSS Spain, volunteer teams of archaeologists, anthropologists and forensic scientists head out every year on expeditions to dig for suspected mass graves — a legacy of Spain’s fascist past.

Questions raised over Queen’s ancestry after DNA test on Richard III’s cousins

tdy_King_Richard_130204_vembedlarge456The bones of the king under the car park have delivered further shocks, 527 years after his death and more than two years after his remains were discovered in Leicester: Richard III was a blue-eyed blond, and the present Queen may not be descended from John of Gaunt and Edward III, the lineage on which the Tudor claim to the throne originated.