Ancient Populations (ancient + population)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Eating between the Lines: Mississippian Migration and Stable Carbon Isotope Variation in Fort Ancient Populations

Robert A. Cook
ABSTRACT Appreciating variation along the edges of traditional archaeological Culture Historical boundaries requires close consideration of social contexts associated with culture contact. We focus on dietary variation as a function of these concerns through a case study of Fort Ancient populations who, on average, consumed lower quantities of maize than their Mississippian neighbors as determined by stable carbon isotope ratios of bone collagen. However, this dichotomy is not as rigid as initially thought, with some Fort Ancient burials producing stable carbon isotope ratios similar to Mississippian cases. Detailed investigation of internal variation of carbon isotopes for human burials at the SunWatch site provides evidence that contact included small-scale Mississippian migrations to Fort Ancient sites. The main conclusion is that variation in diet and archaeological context can be a useful approach for examining prehistoric migration. [source]

Brief communication: Mass spectroscopic characterization of tetracycline in the skeletal remains of an ancient population from Sudanese Nubia 350,550 CE

Mark L. Nelson
Abstract Histological evidence of tetracycline use has been reported in an ancient X-Group population (350,550 CE) from Sudanese Nubia (Bassett et al., 1980). When bone samples were examined by fluorescent microscopy under UV light at 490 Ĺ yellow,green fluorophore deposition bands, similar to those produced by tetracycline, were observed, suggesting significant exposure of the population to the antibiotic. These reports were met skeptically with claims that the fluorescence was the result of postmortem taphonomic infiltration of bacteria and fungi. Herein, we report the acid extraction and mass spectroscopic characterization of the antibiotic tetracycline from these samples. The bone samples were demineralized in anhydrous hydrogen fluoride which dissolved the bone-complexed tetracycline, followed by isolation by solid phase extraction on reverse-phase media. Chemical characterization by high pressure liquid chromatography mass-spectroscopic procedures showed that the retention times and mass spectra of the bone extract were identical to tetracycline when treated similarly. These results indicate that a natural product tetracycline was detectable within the sampled bone and was converted to the acid-stable form, anhydrotetracycline, with a mass + H of 427.1 amu. Our findings show that the bone sampled is labeled by the antibiotic tetracycline, and that the NAX population ingested and were exposed to tetracycline-containing materials in their dietary regime. Am J Phys Anthropol 143:151,154, 2010. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Out of Arabia,The settlement of Island Soqotra as revealed by mitochondrial and Y chromosome genetic diversity

Viktor, erný
Abstract The Soqotra archipelago is one of the most isolated landmasses in the world, situated at the mouth of the Gulf of Aden between the Horn of Africa and southern Arabia. The main island of Soqotra lies not far from the proposed southern migration route of anatomically modern humans out of Africa ,60,000 years ago (kya), suggesting the island may harbor traces of that first dispersal. Nothing is known about the timing and origin of the first Soqotri settlers. The oldest historical visitors to the island in the 15th century reported only the presence of an ancient population. We collected samples throughout the island and analyzed mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosomal variation. We found little African influence among the indigenous people of the island. Although the island population likely experienced founder effects, links to the Arabian Peninsula or southwestern Asia can still be found. In comparison with datasets from neighboring regions, the Soqotri population shows evidence of long-term isolation and autochthonous evolution of several mitochondrial haplogroups. Specifically, we identified two high-frequency founder lineages that have not been detected in any other populations and classified them as a new R0a1a1 subclade. Recent expansion of the novel lineages is consistent with a Holocene settlement of the island ,6 kya. Am J Phys Anthropol, 2009. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Nearby stars of the Galactic disk and halo.


Abstract High-resolution spectroscopic observations of about 150 nearby stars or star systems are presented and discussed. The study of these and another 100 objects of the previous papers of this series implies that the Galaxy became reality 13 or 14 Gyr ago with the implementation of a massive, rotationally-supported population of thick-disk stars. The very high star formation rate in that phase gave rise to a rapid metal enrichment and an expulsion of gas in supernovae-driven Galactic winds, but was followed by a star formation gap for no less than three billion years at the Sun's galactocentric distance. In a second phase, then, the thin disk , our "familiar Milky Way" , came on stage. Nowadays it traces the bright side of the Galaxy, but it is also embedded in a huge coffin of dead thick-disk stars that account for a large amount of baryonic dark matter. As opposed to this, cold-dark-matter-dominated cosmologies that suggest a more gradual hierarchical buildup through mergers of minor structures, though popular, are a poor description for the Milky Way Galaxy , and by inference many other spirals as well , if, as the sample implies, the fossil records of its long-lived stars do not stick to this paradigm. Apart from this general picture that emerges with reference to the entire sample stars, a good deal of the present work is however also concerned with detailed discussions of many individual objects. Among the most interesting we mention the blue straggler or merger candidates HD 165401 and HD 137763/HD 137778, the likely accretion of a giant planet or brown dwarf on 59 Vir in its recent history, and HD 63433 that proves to be a young solar analog at , , 200 Myr. Likewise, the secondary to HR 4867, formerly suspected non-single from the Hipparcos astrometry, is directly detectable in the highresolution spectroscopic tracings, whereas the visual binary , Cet is instead at least triple, and presumably even quadruple. With respect to the nearby young stars a complete account of the UrsaMajor Association is presented, and we provide as well plain evidence for another, the "Hercules-Lyra Association", the likely existence of which was only realized in recent years. On account of its rotation, chemistry, and age we do confirm that the Sun is very typical among its G-type neighbors; as to its kinematics, it appears however not unlikely that the Sun's known low peculiar space velocity could indeed be the cause for the weak paleontological record of mass extinctions and major impact events on our parent planet during the most recent Galactic plane passage of the solar system. Although the significance of this correlation certainly remains a matter of debate for years to come, we point in this context to the principal importance of the thick disk for a complete census with respect to the local surface and volume densities. Other important effects that can be ascribed to this dark stellar population comprise (i) the observed plateau in the shape of the luminosity function of the local FGK stars, (ii) a small though systematic effect on the basic solar motion, (iii) a reassessment of the term "asymmetrical drift velocity" for the remainder (i.e. the thin disk) of the stellar objects, (iv) its ability to account for the bulk of the recently discovered high-velocity blue white dwarfs, (v) its major contribution to the Sun's ,220 km s,1 rotational velocity around the Galactic center, and (vi) the significant flattening that it imposes on the Milky Way's rotation curve. Finally we note a high multiplicity fraction in the small but volume-complete local sample of stars of this ancient population. This in turn is highly suggestive for a star formation scenario wherein the few existing single stellar objects might only arise from either late mergers or the dynamical ejection of former triple or higher level star systems. (© 2004 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim) [source]

Tooth wear in two ancient populations of the Khazar Kaganat region in the Ukraine

W. H. Arnold
Abstract Tooth wear is a common phenomenon in archaeological material. It has been related to the abrasiveness of diet and to the tribological attrition of teeth of individuals. Numerous investigations have been carried out in north and middle American samples as well as African anthropological material. Not much is known about tooth wear in European cultures. Eleven skulls from Chervona Gusarovka, and 14 skulls from the Upper Saltov sites of the Khazar Kaganat region (8th,10th centuries AD) in eastern Ukraine, with different diets were examined. A total of 208 teeth were studied for tooth wear, caries prevalence and periodontal status. Abrasion grades were determined according to a standardised classification and statistically evaluated. Periodontal status was measured using the distance between the enamel-cementum junction and alveolar crest and the gingival attachment level respectively. Tooth wear was significantly different (P,<,0.01) between the two populations. A low caries prevalence of 4.2% in the Chervona Gusarovka population and 1.7% in the Upper Saltov population was found. Significantly more alveolar crest bone resorption on the lingual side was found in the premolars and anterior teeth of the Chervona Gusarovka population. No significant differences were found regarding gingival attachment levels and gingival recession. It is concluded that the content and mode of food preparation influenced tooth wear, as reflected by the prevalence of dental caries and periodontal diseases in these ancient populations. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Congenital anomalies of the vertebral column: a case study on ancient and modern Egypt

Azza Mohamed Sarry El-Din
Abstract The aim of this paper is to identify the frequency of congenital anomalies of the vertebral column in ancient Egyptians. The material for this study consisted of 272 skeletons excavated from Giza and belonging to the Old Kingdom (the time of the early pyramid builders). The vertebral columns of these skeletons were examined for the different types of congenital anomalies that affect the vertebrae. Nine cases (3.33%) were affected with spina bifida occulta, while six cases (2.22%) had transitional vertebrae at the lumbosacral joint. These frequencies are compared with other ancient populations. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Fitness and genetic variation of Viola calaminaria, an endemic metallophyte: implications of population structure and history

PLANT BIOLOGY, Issue 6 2008
J.-P. Bizoux
Abstract We investigated variations in genetic diversity and plant fitness in a rare endemic metallophyte of calamine soils, Viola calaminaria, in relation to population size, population connectivity and population history in order to evaluate and discuss potential conservation strategies for the species. Mean population genetic diversity (Hs = 0.25) of V. calaminaria was similar to endemic non-metallophyte taxa. Twenty-one per cent of the genetic variation was partitioned among populations and a low (9%) but significant differentiation was found among geographical regions. Our results did not support the hypothesis that the acquisition of metal tolerance may result in reduced genetic diversity, and suggested that strict metallophytes do not exhibit higher inter-population differentiation resulting from scattered habitats. There were no relationships between population genetic diversity and population size. Significant correlations were found between plant fitness and (i) population size and (ii) connectivity index. Recently-founded populations exhibited the same level of genetic diversity as ancient populations and also possessed higher plant fitness. There was no indication of strong founder effects in recently-established populations. The results suggest that the creation of habitats through human activities could provide new opportunities for conservation of this species. [source]

The usefulness of caries frequency, depth, and location in determining cariogenicity and past subsistence: A test on early and later agriculturalists from the Peruvian coast

Luis Pezo Lanfranco
Abstract Dental markers have been used to unravel particularities of paleodiet, subsistence, social structure, and health. This article aims to compare oral pathology among four pre-Columbian groups with different degrees of agricultural and socio-cultural development but comparable ecological conditions who lived on the coastal desert of Peru. Three of these groups are assigned to distinct phases of the Formative Period (2500,1 BC), a time critical for our understanding of the development of agriculture and social complexity. The fourth group corresponds to the Late Intermediate Period (1000,1470 AD), when agriculture had its apogee and society was highly stratified. In this study we test whether there is an increase (1) in the frequency of carious lesions and (2) in caries depth, and (3) if there is a shift from occlusal to extra-occlusal caries locations with the development of agriculture. Therefore, we analyze the frequencies of carious lesions and antemortem tooth loss (AMTL), the caries distributions by age, sex, and type of tooth, as well as the tissues affected by, and the location of the carious lesions. Since there are no significant differences in the frequencies of carious lesions and AMTL between the groups, we reject hypothesis 1. In contrast, caries depth does increase, and caries location changes from occlusal to extra-occlusal sites with agricultural development. However, we can only corroborate hypothesis 2 and 3 when taking into consideration dental wear. Thus, we recommend that caries depth and locations should be used with evaluations of dental wear to reconstruct subsistence in ancient populations. Am J Phys Anthropol 143:75,91, 2010. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Brief communication: Additional cases of maxillary canine-first premolar transposition in several prehistoric skeletal assemblages from the Santa Barbara Channel Islands of California,

Sabrina B. Sholts
Abstract This article identifies and discusses seven new cases of complete maxillary canine-premolar transposition in ancient populations from the Santa Barbara Channel region of California. A high frequency of this tooth transposition has been previously documented within a single prehistoric cemetery on one of the Channel Islands. A total of 966 crania representing 30 local sites and about 7,000 years of human occupation were examined, revealing an abnormally high prevalence of this transposition trait among islanders during the Early period of southern California prehistory (,5500,600 B.C.). One of the affected crania is from a cemetery more than 7,000-years-old and constitutes the earliest case of tooth transposition in humans so far reported. The results are consistent with findings by other studies that have indicated inbreeding among the early Channel Islands groups. Together with the normal transposition rates among mainland populations, the decreasing prevalence of maxillary canine-first premolar transposition among island populations across the Holocene suggests that inbreeding on the northern Channel Islands had all but ceased by the end of the first millennium B.C., most likely as a result of increased cross-channel migration and interaction. Am J Phys Anthropol 143:155,160, 2010. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Mitochondrial DNA analysis of Jomon skeletons from the Funadomari site, Hokkaido, and its implication for the origins of Native American

Noboru Adachi
Abstract Ancient DNA recovered from 16 Jomon skeletons excavated from Funadomari site, Hokkaido, Japan was analyzed to elucidate the genealogy of the early settlers of the Japanese archipelago. Both the control and coding regions of their mitochondrial DNA were analyzed in detail, and we could securely assign 14 mtDNAs to relevant haplogroups. Haplogroups D1a, M7a, and N9b were observed in these individuals, and N9b was by far the most predominant. The fact that haplogroups N9b and M7a were observed in Hokkaido Jomons bore out the hypothesis that these haplogroups are the (pre-) Jomon contribution to the modern Japanese mtDNA pool. Moreover, the fact that Hokkaido Jomons shared haplogroup D1 with Native Americans validates the hypothesized genetic affinity of the Jomon people to Native Americans, providing direct evidence for the genetic relationships between these populations. However, probably due to the small sample size or close consanguinity among the members of the site, the frequencies of the haplogroups in Funadomari skeletons were quite different from any modern populations, including Hokkaido Ainu, who have been regarded as the direct descendant of the Hokkaido Jomon people. It appears that the genetic study of ancient populations in northern part of Japan brings important information to the understanding of human migration in northeast Asia and America. Am J Phys Anthropol, 2009. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]