A flock of sheep, goats and cattle: Ancient DNA analysis reveals complexities of historical parchment manufacture

Michael G. Campana, Mim A. Bower, Melanie J. Bailey, Frauke Stock, Tamsin C. O'Connell, Ceiridwen J. Edwards, Caroline Checkley-Scott, Barry Knight, Matthew Spencer, Christopher J. Howe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Parchments comprise one of the most common and valuable sources of archaeological and historical data. Previous studies have shown that parchment also preserves genetic data. These data could be valuable for population studies, to understand past animal husbandry, the development of breeds and varieties and to comment on the provenance of parchments. To improve our understanding of DNA contained in parchments, we analysed genetic data, including both mitochondrial and autosomal loci, from 18th to 19th century English parchments which stable isotope analysis had indicated were well-preserved. DNA results were unexpected. All but one of the parchments produced multiple sequences matching several different species. Ion beam analysis ruled out surface treatments of the parchments (including ink and animal glues) as the origin of these multiple sequences. Our results suggest that the DNA content of parchment is more complex than previous research has suggested and that multiple stages of parchment manufacture, treatment and storage are preserved in parchment DNA extracts.

LanguageEnglish
Pages1317-1325
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Archaeological Science
Volume37
Issue number6
Early online date6 Jan 2010
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2010
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

genetic test
animal husbandry
animal
DNA Analysis
Parchment
Goat
Cattle
Ancient DNA

Cite this

Campana, Michael G. ; Bower, Mim A. ; Bailey, Melanie J. ; Stock, Frauke ; O'Connell, Tamsin C. ; Edwards, Ceiridwen J. ; Checkley-Scott, Caroline ; Knight, Barry ; Spencer, Matthew ; Howe, Christopher J. / A flock of sheep, goats and cattle : Ancient DNA analysis reveals complexities of historical parchment manufacture. In: Journal of Archaeological Science. 2010 ; Vol. 37, No. 6. pp. 1317-1325.
@article{ece9e0fb1f7f4179885d97d8de22aca7,
title = "A flock of sheep, goats and cattle: Ancient DNA analysis reveals complexities of historical parchment manufacture",
abstract = "Parchments comprise one of the most common and valuable sources of archaeological and historical data. Previous studies have shown that parchment also preserves genetic data. These data could be valuable for population studies, to understand past animal husbandry, the development of breeds and varieties and to comment on the provenance of parchments. To improve our understanding of DNA contained in parchments, we analysed genetic data, including both mitochondrial and autosomal loci, from 18th to 19th century English parchments which stable isotope analysis had indicated were well-preserved. DNA results were unexpected. All but one of the parchments produced multiple sequences matching several different species. Ion beam analysis ruled out surface treatments of the parchments (including ink and animal glues) as the origin of these multiple sequences. Our results suggest that the DNA content of parchment is more complex than previous research has suggested and that multiple stages of parchment manufacture, treatment and storage are preserved in parchment DNA extracts.",
keywords = "Ancient DNA, DNA preservation, Historic DNA, Jumping PCR, Parchment, Skin materials",
author = "Campana, {Michael G.} and Bower, {Mim A.} and Bailey, {Melanie J.} and Frauke Stock and O'Connell, {Tamsin C.} and Edwards, {Ceiridwen J.} and Caroline Checkley-Scott and Barry Knight and Matthew Spencer and Howe, {Christopher J.}",
year = "2010",
month = "6",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.jas.2009.12.036",
language = "English",
volume = "37",
pages = "1317--1325",
journal = "Journal of Archaeological Science",
issn = "0305-4403",
publisher = "Academic Press Inc.",
number = "6",

}

Campana, MG, Bower, MA, Bailey, MJ, Stock, F, O'Connell, TC, Edwards, CJ, Checkley-Scott, C, Knight, B, Spencer, M & Howe, CJ 2010, 'A flock of sheep, goats and cattle: Ancient DNA analysis reveals complexities of historical parchment manufacture', Journal of Archaeological Science, vol. 37, no. 6, pp. 1317-1325. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2009.12.036

A flock of sheep, goats and cattle : Ancient DNA analysis reveals complexities of historical parchment manufacture. / Campana, Michael G.; Bower, Mim A.; Bailey, Melanie J.; Stock, Frauke; O'Connell, Tamsin C.; Edwards, Ceiridwen J.; Checkley-Scott, Caroline; Knight, Barry; Spencer, Matthew; Howe, Christopher J.

In: Journal of Archaeological Science, Vol. 37, No. 6, 01.06.2010, p. 1317-1325.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - A flock of sheep, goats and cattle

T2 - Journal of Archaeological Science

AU - Campana, Michael G.

AU - Bower, Mim A.

AU - Bailey, Melanie J.

AU - Stock, Frauke

AU - O'Connell, Tamsin C.

AU - Edwards, Ceiridwen J.

AU - Checkley-Scott, Caroline

AU - Knight, Barry

AU - Spencer, Matthew

AU - Howe, Christopher J.

PY - 2010/6/1

Y1 - 2010/6/1

N2 - Parchments comprise one of the most common and valuable sources of archaeological and historical data. Previous studies have shown that parchment also preserves genetic data. These data could be valuable for population studies, to understand past animal husbandry, the development of breeds and varieties and to comment on the provenance of parchments. To improve our understanding of DNA contained in parchments, we analysed genetic data, including both mitochondrial and autosomal loci, from 18th to 19th century English parchments which stable isotope analysis had indicated were well-preserved. DNA results were unexpected. All but one of the parchments produced multiple sequences matching several different species. Ion beam analysis ruled out surface treatments of the parchments (including ink and animal glues) as the origin of these multiple sequences. Our results suggest that the DNA content of parchment is more complex than previous research has suggested and that multiple stages of parchment manufacture, treatment and storage are preserved in parchment DNA extracts.

AB - Parchments comprise one of the most common and valuable sources of archaeological and historical data. Previous studies have shown that parchment also preserves genetic data. These data could be valuable for population studies, to understand past animal husbandry, the development of breeds and varieties and to comment on the provenance of parchments. To improve our understanding of DNA contained in parchments, we analysed genetic data, including both mitochondrial and autosomal loci, from 18th to 19th century English parchments which stable isotope analysis had indicated were well-preserved. DNA results were unexpected. All but one of the parchments produced multiple sequences matching several different species. Ion beam analysis ruled out surface treatments of the parchments (including ink and animal glues) as the origin of these multiple sequences. Our results suggest that the DNA content of parchment is more complex than previous research has suggested and that multiple stages of parchment manufacture, treatment and storage are preserved in parchment DNA extracts.

KW - Ancient DNA

KW - DNA preservation

KW - Historic DNA

KW - Jumping PCR

KW - Parchment

KW - Skin materials

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=77950020530&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.jas.2009.12.036

DO - 10.1016/j.jas.2009.12.036

M3 - Article

VL - 37

SP - 1317

EP - 1325

JO - Journal of Archaeological Science

JF - Journal of Archaeological Science

SN - 0305-4403

IS - 6

ER -