View Full Version : Oldest Dna in Scandinavia found in "chewing gum"

17-05-19, 14:44

"The first humans who settled in Scandinavia more than 10,000 years ago left their DNA behind in ancient chewing gum, masticated lumps made from birch bark pitch. This is shown in a new study conducted at Stockholm University and published in Communications Biology."

"Few human bones of this age have been found in Scandinavia, and not all of them have preserved enough DNA for archaeogenetic studies. In fact, the DNA from these newly examined chewing gums is the oldest human DNA ever sequenced from this area. The DNA, derived from two females and one male, creates an exciting link between material culture (https://phys.org/tags/material+culture/) and human genetics."

"The investigated pieces come from Huseby-Klev, an early Mesolithic hunter-fisher site on the Swedish west coast. The site excavation was done in the early 1990s, but it was not possible to analyse ancient human DNA then, let alone that embedded in non-human tissue. The masticates were made out of birch bark tar and used as glue in tool production and other types of technology during the Stone Age."

"The results show that the individuals shared close genetic affinity to other hunter-gatherers in Sweden and to early Mesolithic populations from Ice Age Europe. However, the tools produced at the site were a part of lithic technology brought to Scandinavia from the East European Plain, modern day Russia. This scenario of a culture and genetic influx into Scandinavia from two routes was proposed in earlier studies, and these ancient chewing gum samples provide an exciting link directly between the tools and materials used and human genetics."

18-05-19, 01:01