GENEALOGY-DNA-L ArchivesArchiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2001-09 > 1001808811
From: "Allan S. Gleason" <>
Subject: Re: [DNA] DNA from skeletons
Date: Sat, 29 Sep 2001 17:13:31 -0700
I like this subject, but apparently it is kind of guess and by gosh
whether one can extract DNA from once living things.
Didn't they get DNA from a mosquito encased in prehistoric resin - amber
was it? Maybe our burial rituals should be changed to include a vial of
the deceased's tissue imbedded in resin for future use and
identification. Why not?
BTW, my mother and father were both cremated as per their wishes, but I
abhore the idea! I want to be found in some dig 5,000 years from now
and pondered upon!
> In a message dated 09/28/01 9:50:21 AM Pacific Daylight Time,
> > Outside of our obviously interested folks, I'm not sure how it sounds...BUT
> > why not gather DNA w/ our modern techniques from the skeletons's of the
> > KNOWN TO BE famous (infamous), in say Westminster Abbey for starters?
> In spite of some spectacular successes, such as the 5,000 year old Ice Man,
> it's not always possible to retrieve any DNA at all from ancient remains.
> Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is the most likely, for a couple of reasons: every
> cell has hundreds of copies, and it's a small molecule, so even partial
> fragments can provide useful information. But much depends on environmental
> conditions -- for example, they could not extract DNA from some unknown
> victims of the Titanic who had been buried in Halifax:
> I asked Bryan Sykes in his chat session on about.com if he had ever been able
> to extract Y chromosome DNA from ancient remains, and his answer was that he
> had only managed to do it a couple of times, and he wasn't sure how accurate
> the results were. That means it's quite unlikely that surname studies will be
> able to reinforce their findings with DNA from skeletons.
> Search over 1 Billion names at Ancestry.com!