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Vikings and Migrants: Unravelling Scandinavia's Genetic Mosaic in the Viking Era

We recently published a study in Cell that reveals that the Viking period, spanning from the late 8th to mid-11th century, saw a massive influx of people into Scandinavia. Interestingly, later Scandinavians don't have as much ancestry from other places from outside Scandinavia as their... click to read more

Views 1465
Reading time 3 min
published on Nov 13, 2023
Plagued for millennia: The complex transmission and ecology of prehistoric Yersinia pestis

Yersinia pestis is the bacterium that causes plague, a zoonotic disease transmitted from rodents to humans via fleas. It is also renowned for being involved in three pandemics throughout human history. In recent years it has become evident that Y. pestis’ association with humans predates... click to read more

  • Aida Andrades Valtueña | Postdoctoral Researcher at Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
  • Gunnar U. Neumann | PhD Student at Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
  • Alexander Herbig | Research Group Leader at Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
Views 1709
Reading time 3 min
published on Jul 31, 2023
Diversity matters – Syphilis and related diseases in historical Europe

First historical cases of sexually transmitted syphilis were documented by Italian doctors in the wake of Neapolitan war. The disease was characterized by painful pustules, frightful facial deformities, eventual madness and even death. The bacteria responsible for this scourge, Treponema pallidum (also known as T.... click to read more

  • Verena J. Schuenemann | Assistant Professor at Institute for Evolutionary Medicine, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland
  • Kerttu Majander | Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Institute of Evolutionary Medicine, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland
Views 3136
Reading time 3 min
published on Oct 12, 2021
7000 years of the peopling of present-day France revealed by paleogenomics

By accessing the genomes of past populations, researchers have revealed how migrations have been at the origin of major cultural changes for our societies. Some of them have shaped Europe's modern genetic heritage. In France, this type of study had only been carried out on... click to read more

  • Melanie Pruvost | Research fellow at University of Bordeaux, CNRS, UMR5199 De la Préhistoire à l’Actuel : Culture, Environnement et Anthropologie (PACEA), allée Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 33600 Pessac
Views 4811
Reading time 3.5 min
published on Dec 23, 2020
Beware of humans and glacial maximums – the story of cave bear extinction

The cave bear is one of the dozens of species of large Pleistocene mammals that faced extinction during the last Ice Age. Until today, the reasons for their extinctions remain mysterious, especially since the cave bear Ursus spelaeus populated vast areas of Eurasia for more... click to read more

  • Verena J. Schuenemann | Assistant Professor at Institute for Evolutionary Medicine, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland
  • Joscha Gretzinger | PhD student at Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, Jena, Germany
Views 5622
Reading time 3 min
published on Mar 25, 2020