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It is difficult to obtain fossil data from the 10% of Earth's terrestrial surface that is covered by thick glaciers and ice sheets, and hence, knowledge of the paleoenvironments of these regions has remained limited. We show that DNA and amino acids from buried organisms can be recovered from the basal sections of deep ice cores, enabling reconstructions of(More)
The colonization of Eurasia by early humans is a key event after their spread out of Africa, but the nature, timing and ecological context of the earliest human occupation of northwest Europe is uncertain and has been the subject of intense debate. The southern Caucasus was occupied about 1.8 million years (Myr) ago, whereas human remains from(More)
An interdisciplinary study of a small sedimentary basin at Neumark Nord 2 (NN2), Germany, has yielded a high-resolution record of the palaeomagnetic Blake Event, which we are able to place at the early part of the last interglacial pollen sequence documented from the same section. We use this data to calculate the duration of this stratigraphically(More)
Many rare and valuable ancient specimens now carry the scars of ancient DNA research, as questions of population genetics and phylogeography require larger sample sets. This fuels the demand for reliable techniques to screen for DNA preservation prior to destructive sampling. Only one such technique has been widely adopted: the extent of aspartic acid(More)
Marine and ice-core records show that the Earth has experienced a succession of glacials and interglacials during the Quaternary (last ∼2.6 million years), although it is often difficult to correlate fragmentary terrestrial records with specific cycles. Aminostratigraphy is a method potentially able to link terrestrial sequences to the marine isotope stages(More)
Evolutionary biologists are increasingly relying on ancient DNA from archaeological animal bones to study processes such as domestication and population dispersals. As many animal bones found on archaeological sites are likely to have been cooked, the potential for DNA preservation must be carefully considered to maximise the chance of amplification(More)
Keywords: Amino acid geochronology Intra-crystalline protein decomposition Palaeolithic Pleistocene Interglacial a b s t r a c t Aminostratigraphies of Quaternary non-marine deposits in Europe have been previously based on the racemization of a single amino acid in aragonitic shells from land and freshwater molluscs. The value of analysing multiple amino(More)
RATIONALE Archaeological keratin samples are increasingly the subject of palaeodietary, provenancing and dating studies. Keratin samples from wet archaeological contexts are microbiologically and chemically degraded, causing differential diagenesis of protein structures in hair fibres. The effects of these processes on the analytical parameters of interest(More)