Danish scientists unlock the mysteries of the past

New research demonstrates that proteins can show how individuals lived and died in the past

March 24th, 2014 3:36 pm| by admin

New research has begun to unlock how our ancestors actually lived, what illnesses they suffered from, and how they died by analysing proteins found in their bodies, according to the scientific magazine Videnskab.dk.

Lung infection in mummy
By studying the building blocks of life, researcher Enrico Capello and his colleagues from the country’s natural history museum, Statens Naturhistoriske Museum, have been able to determine the illnesses of people and animals.

The researchers have, for example, been able to determine the antibiotic resistance of humans 1,000 years ago by analysing the proteins found in a 1,000-year-old mummified corpse's plaque residue. Likewise, in another study cited by Videnskab.dk, proteins were studied to show that a subject suffered from a serious lung infection at the time of death.

More research needed
However, the Danish researchers are not yet able to identify a lot of the illnesses and infections. To do so, they would first need to measure the number of proteins. As thing stand, they are only able to detect their presence.  

Bohr, photographed in 1948 at Princeton University aged 63, saw out the latter years of his career in the US, promoting the peaceful application of atomic energy (photo: Princeton University/American Institute of Physics/Science Photo Library)
Atomic scientist’s quantum leap changed the world of physics forever
For such a tiny country, Denmark certainly punches above its weight, and th...
A tragedy in Copenhagen this afternoon (photo:PDP)
Mother of four stabbed to death in Copenhagen
A 51-year-old woman has been stabbed to death in an apartment in Nørrebro ...
German conductor Hartmut Haenchen warned against cuts from the Royal Orchestra (photo:  Riccardo Musacchio)
Musicians and maestros condemn cuts at the Royal Danish Theatre
The musicians at Det Kongelige Kapel, which is internationally known and ac...
Not rolling tomorrow (photo: Hochgeladen von Heb)
The postman may not ring at all in Copenhagen tomorrow
Some Copenhagen residents will see neither post nor packages tomorrow as ab...
Grejfreak has moved on from its original idea of selling military gear (photo: Bonzo)
Aarhus veteran cashing in on military gear
Kristian Juel Rasmussen came back from his deployment with the Danish milit...
Basking sharks are rare in Danish waters these days (photo: Anders Peter Schultz, Statens Naturhistoriske Museum)
Massive shark caught off Danish coast
A huge four-metre long shark was caught in Kattegat Strait off the coast o...