Notices
Results 1 to 3 of 3

Thread: DNA Testing On ancient Mummies-- Is it reliable?

  1. #1 DNA Testing On ancient Mummies-- Is it reliable? 
    New Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    2
    Hey! I hope I posted this in the right section of the forum.

    I just have a little Bio-related question that's bugging me, and since I'm more an English/History type, I thought I'd come bother you Science types in order to beg for help.:wink:

    This is kind of old news, but DNA testing done on this mummy that was formerly believed to be female shows that it is actually male. I've also heard that DNA testing on Egyptian mummies can be kind of sketchy though, but I thought I'd ask some of you people to see what you think.

    Here's a few links in case you want to see them:* Here's the specific mummy that I'm wondering about (but for the record: I never believed that this mummy was Nefertiti.): http://www.cbc.ca/disclosure/archives/040113_...

    * Here's a document about the specific DNA testing that was done: http://www.cbc.ca/disclosure/archives/040113_...

    This uber simple article says that DNA testing is kind of unreliable ( http://www.egyptologyonline.com/using_dna.htm ) but I'm wondering if they'd be likely to screw up on something as basic as sex.

    Thanks for your help!


    Reply With Quote  
     

  2.  
     

  3. #2  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    792
    I could only access the last link.

    Cross contamination is ALWAYS a threat, not just on mummies but on al DNA fingerprinting and there are always measures taken to ensure this doesnt happen. Apart frm that, if they are getting DNA sequences that make sense then they know they havent made a mistake. ie as they found out that Ahmose I had married his full sister Seknet-re and that Amenhotep I's mtDNA was different from Ahmose I. It isnt very likely one would make a mistake which would lead to this kind of conclusion.

    Also, they claim that they could only find DNA from 7 from 27 mummies which sounds like they are not making mistakes.

    As to sex, that is based on the X & Y chromosome which are very different, if their DNA results are remotely accurate (which they seem to be!) then they wouldnt mak errors with the sex of the mummy.


    Reply With Quote  
     

  4. #3  
    New Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    2
    Okay. Thanks for the help!!
    Reply With Quote  
     

Bookmarks
Bookmarks
Posting Permissions
  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •