Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 3

Archeology Related Abstracts

3 Application of GPR for Prospection in Two Archaeological Sites at Aswan Area, Egypt

Authors: Abbas Mohamed Abbas, Raafat El-Shafie Fat-Helbary, Karrar Omar El Fergawy, Ahmed Hamed Sayed


The exploration in archaeological area requires non-invasive methods, and hence the Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) technique is a proper candidate for this task. GPR investigation is widely applied for searching for hidden ancient targets. So, in this paper GPR technique has been used in archaeological investigation. The aim of this study was to obtain information about the subsurface and associated structures beneath two selected sites at the western bank of the River Nile at Aswan city. These sites have archaeological structures of different ages starting from 6thand 12th Dynasties to the Greco-Roman period. The first site is called Nag’ El Gulab, the study area was 30 x 16 m with separating distance 2m between each profile, while the second site is Nag’ El Qoba, the survey method was not in grid but in lines pattern with different lengths. All of these sites were surveyed by GPR model SIR-3000 with antenna 200 MHz. Beside the processing of each profile individually, the time-slice maps have been conducted Nag’ El Gulab site, to view the amplitude changes in a series of horizontal time slices within the ground. The obtained results show anomalies may interpret as presence of associated tombs structures. The probable tombs structures similar in their depth level to the opened tombs in the studied areas.

Keywords: Archeology, ground penetrating radar, Nag’ El Gulab, Nag’ El Qoba

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2 Age Estimation Using Destructive and Non-Destructive Dental Methods on an Archeological Human Sample from the Poor Claire Nunnery in Brussels, Belgium

Authors: Pilar Cornejo Ulloa, Guy Willems, Steffen Fieuws, Kim Quintelier, Wim Van Neer, Patrick Thevissen


Dental age estimation can be performed both in living and deceased individuals. In anthropology, few studies have tested the reliability of dental age estimation methods complementary to the usually applied osteological methods. Objectives: In this study, destructive and non-destructive dental age estimation methods were applied on an archeological sample in order to compare them with the previously obtained anthropological age estimates. Materials and Methods: One hundred and thirty-four teeth from 24 individuals were analyzed using Kvaal, Kvaal and Solheim, Bang and Ramm, Lamendin, Gustafson, Maples, Dalitz and Johanson’s methods. Results: A high variability and wider age ranges than the ones previously obtained by the anthropologist could be observed. Destructive methods had a slightly higher agreement than the non-destructive. Discussion: Due to the heterogeneity of the sample and the lack of the real age at death, the obtained results were not representative, and it was not possible to suggest one dental age estimation method over another.

Keywords: Forensic Anthropology, Archeology, Forensic Dentistry, dental age estimation

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1 Epigenetic and Archeology: A Quest to Re-Read Humanity

Authors: Salma A. Mahmoud


Epigenetic, or alteration in gene expression influenced by extragenetic factors, has emerged as one of the most promising areas that will address some of the gaps in our current knowledge in understanding patterns of human variation. In the last decade, the research investigating epigenetic mechanisms in many fields has flourished and witnessed significant progress. It paved the way for a new era of integrated research especially between anthropology/archeology and life sciences. Skeletal remains are considered the most significant source of information for studying human variations across history, and by utilizing these valuable remains, we can interpret the past events, cultures and populations. In addition to archeological, historical and anthropological importance, studying bones has great implications in other fields such as medicine and science. Bones also can hold within them the secrets of the future as they can act as predictive tools for health, society characteristics and dietary requirements. Bones in their basic forms are composed of cells (osteocytes) that are affected by both genetic and environmental factors, which can only explain a small part of their variability. The primary objective of this project is to examine the epigenetic landscape/signature within bones of archeological remains as a novel marker that could reveal new ways to conceptualize chronological events, gender differences, social status and ecological variations. We attempted here to address discrepancies in common variants such as methylome as well as novel epigenetic regulators such as chromatin remodelers, which to our best knowledge have not yet been investigated by anthropologists/ paleoepigenetists using plethora of techniques (biological, computational, and statistical). Moreover, extracting epigenetic information from bones will highlight the importance of osseous material as a vector to study human beings in several contexts (social, cultural and environmental), and strengthen their essential role as model systems that can be used to investigate and construct various cultural, political and economic events. We also address all steps required to plan and conduct an epigenetic analysis from bone materials (modern and ancient) as well as discussing the key challenges facing researchers aiming to investigate this field. In conclusion, this project will serve as a primer for bioarcheologists/anthropologists and human biologists interested in incorporating epigenetic data into their research programs. Understanding the roles of epigenetic mechanisms in bone structure and function will be very helpful for a better comprehension of their biology and highlighting their essentiality as interdisciplinary vectors and a key material in archeological research.

Keywords: Epigenetics, Chromatin, Archeology, bones, methylome

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