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Life and Times of Takabuti in Ancient EgyptInvestigating the Belfast Mummy$
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Rosalie David and Eileen Murphy

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9781800348585

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781800348585.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 27 June 2022

Mitochondrial DNA of Takabuti

Mitochondrial DNA of Takabuti

(p.52) Mitochondrial DNA of Takabuti
Life and Times of Takabuti in Ancient Egypt

Konstantina Drosou

Liverpool University Press

The period from the development of the Mendelian laws of heredity (1865) and the discovery of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) by Friedrich Miescher (1869), to Schrödinger’s characterisation of the chromosome as an aperiodic crystal and the deciphering of the DNA structure and its information-encoding potential (1952), was an era of radical changes in scientific thought. This resulted in revolutionary insights that would forever change our perception of the universe. These paradigm-shifting events in science signalled the transition from classical genetics to molecular genetics, a new reality. Questions such as how genetics can contribute to the understanding of humans and the environment have triggered the creation of numerous cognate disciplines. The analysis of preserved organisms and ancient remains on a molecular level has created the new scientific field of biomolecular archaeology, thereby opening up an entirely new avenue in evolutionary studies. The fundamental principle upon which biomolecular archaeology is based is that any type of biomolecule, such as nucleic acids, lipids, proteins and even carbohydrates, has the potential, under favourable conditions, to leave traces of organic residues, albeit in a heavily degraded state. Ultimately, this field can provide a unique perspective for the molecular analysis and understanding of several aspects of past life, such as adaptation, plant and animal domestication, migratory routes, palaeopa-thology, population genetics and ancestry. That premise has led to a remarkable exploration of ancient DNA (aDNA) with regard to the unique information that it can provide and the breadth of archaeological questions that can be potentially answered. Tissue samples were taken from deep within Takabuti’s body following established protocols to ensure the samples were not contaminated and that minimal damage was caused to her remains (...

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