Navigation Links
Ancient fossil DNA found preserved in crystal

Scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science recently discovered a new source of well-preserved ancient DNA in fossil bones. Their findings were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Fossil DNA is a potential source of information on the evolution, population dynamics, migrations, diets and diseases of animals and humans. But if it is not well preserved or becomes contaminated by modern DNA, the results are uninterpretable.

The scientists, Prof. Steve Weiner and Michal Salamon of the Institute's Structural Biology Department, working in collaboration with Profs. Baruch Arensburg, Tel Aviv University, and Noreen Tuross, Harvard University, may have found a way to overcome these problems.

It was in 1986 that Weiner first reported the existence of crystal clusters in fresh bones. Even when these bones are ground up and treated with sodium hypochlorite ?a substance that removes all traces of organic matter ?the clusters of crystals remain intact and the organic material embedded in them is unaffected. Now, almost 20 years later, Weiner and Salamon have returned to these findings, reasoning that fossil bones might possess such crystal structures containing preserved ancient DNA.

After treating two modern and six fossil animal bones with the sodium hypo-chlorite, they found that DNA could be extracted from most of these crystal aggregates that is better preserved and contains longer fragments than DNA from untreated ground bone. The technique for reading the DNA worked better, as well, and the use of sodium hypochlorite reduces the possibility of modern contamination.

The crystal aggregates act as a "privileged niche in fossil bone," protecting the DNA from hostile environments and leaving it relatively undamaged over time. The team's findings suggest that the DNA in these aggregates should be preferred, whenever possible, over DNA from untreated bone.

This method holds much promise fo r the future analysis of ancient DNA in bones in yielding more reliable and authentic results than has previously been possible, and may help in unearthing the mysteries of our ancestral past.


'"/>

Source:American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science


Related biology news :

1. Ancient olfaction protein is shared by many bugs, offering new pest control target
2. Ancient immune defense mechanism is no match for HIV-1
3. Ancient DNA helps clarify the origins of two extinct New World horse species
4. Researchers Discover Ancient Origins Of Tuberculosis-causing Bacteria
5. Ancient DNA confirms single origin of Malagasy primates
6. Ancient anthropoid origins discovered in Africa
7. Ancient trans-Atlantic swarm brought locusts to the New World
8. Ancient humans brought bottle gourds to the Americas from Asia
9. Ancient DNA helps UF researchers unearth potential hemophilia therapy
10. Ancient DNA provides clues to the evolution of social behavior
11. Ancient ants arose 140-168 million years ago
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:7/28/2018)... ... 2018 , ... Inthirani Arul, an evidence-based healer, today announces research results based ... autoimmune disorders. , Biomarkers for immune function, blood, as well as, inflammation, were ... 110% increase in overall immunity as seen by the rise in antibody levels , ...
(Date:7/26/2018)... ... July 25, 2018 , ... Boston Biotech Conferences ... September 4, 2018 at The Hilton Boston Back Bay Hotel. This peer-to-peer meeting ... experiences and dissect the most relevant deals in biotech. , George Golumbeski recently ...
(Date:7/26/2018)... ... , ... The University City Science Center announced today that ... October 1, 2018. , Mr. Zarrilli brings 35 years of experience from ... management and governance levels. With a proven record in strategy, organizational growth, business ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/14/2018)... THORNTON CLEVELEYS, England (PRWEB) , ... August 14, ... ... in China received further impetus at the 11th Congress of the Chinese Association ... (NASS). At this event, Fule Science & Technology Development , Beijing, and ...
(Date:8/9/2018)... , ... August 08, 2018 , ... Since their establishment ... biotechnology and with a team nearly double its’ size from last year, the company ... new OpenSPR turned heads and impressed crowds at a private product launch event ...
(Date:8/7/2018)... ... August 06, 2018 , ... PetPace , the makers of a ... testing, today announced the launch of a groundbreaking study to identify and eventually predict ... general study of pregnant dogs sponsored by PetPace and conducted by Dr. Smadar Tal, ...
(Date:7/27/2018)... ... July 27, 2018 , ... ... of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) met with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ... a Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Inventory Representation and Equivalency Determinations for ...
Breaking Biology Technology: