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Weird NewsArchaeologists find oldest Scandinavian human DNA in ancient chewing gum

12:00  19 may  2019
12:00  19 may  2019 Source:   abc.net.au

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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 Few human bones of this age have been found in Scandinavia , and not all of them have preserved enough DNA for archaeogenetic studies.

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 Few human bones of this age have been found in Scandinavia , and not all of them have preserved enough DNA for archaeogenetic studies.

Archaeologists find oldest Scandinavian human DNA in ancient chewing gum © Provided by ABC News The chewing gum was discovered in the early 1990s but DNA analysis was only undertaken recently.

A 10,000-year-old piece of chewing gum is offering an insight into Scandinavia's first human settlers.

Archaeologists have extracted DNA belonging to three people — two women and one man — from the tar of a birch bark tree, which ancient settlers both chewed and used to fix arrowheads onto arrows and blades onto axes.

The material was discovered in Huseby-Klev, an early Mesolithic hunter-fisher site on the Swedish west coast, in the early 1990s, but DNA analysis had not been possible until recently.

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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. Please like share and

A 10,000-year- old piece of chewing gum offers an insight into Scandinavia 's first human settlers, with archaeologists extracting DNA belonging to three people.

According to researchers, it is the oldest human DNA sequenced from the area so far.

"Much of our history is visible in the DNA we carry with us," said Anders Gotherstrom from the Archaeological Research Laboratory at Stockholm University, where the work was conducted.

"So we try to look for DNA wherever we believe we can find it."

The results revealed the trio's DNA was found to share a close genetic affinity to other hunter-gatherers in Sweden and to early Mesolithic populations from Ice Age Europe.

However, tools found at the same site where the gum was unearthed were a part of lithic technology brought to Scandinavia from the East European Plain — otherwise known as modern-day Russia.

Researchers now hope the chewing gum will help fill in historical gaps, including who helped make the Stone Age tools, what Scandinavia's first human settlers ate and what bacteria lived in their teeth.

"DNA from these ancient chewing gums have an enormous potential not only for tracing the origin and movement of peoples [a] long time ago, but also for providing insights in their social relations, diseases and food," said Per Persson at the Museum of Cultural History in Oslo.

The findings have been published in the journal Communications Biology.

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