The ancient Egyptians could soon be getting their genomes sequenced as a matter of routine. That’s the view, at least, of the first researchers to use next-generation techniques to analyse DNA from Egyptian mummies.
In a preliminary study that the authors describe as “a first step”, they detected hints of one of the mummies’ ancestral origins, as well as pathogens and a range of plant materials presumably used in the embalming process. The researchers, led by Carsten Pusch, a geneticist at the University of Tübingen in Germany, published their findings last week in the Journal of Applied Genetics.
‘It would be nice to know more about the origins of the ancient Egyptians,’ says Pusch. ‘Where did they come from? Where did they go? Are there still traces of ancestral DNA in today’s Egypt?’ – via Huffington Post.
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It’s amazing what science can do! However, I’m not sure where I stand with this research – it seems so intrusive…