The survival of PCR-amplifiable DNA in cow leather

Annick Vuissoz, Michael Worobey, Nancy N Odegaard, Michael Bunce, Carlos A. Machado, Niels Lynnerup, Elizabeth E. Peacock, M. Thomas P Gilbert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We have investigated the survival of PCR-amplifiable mitochondrial and nuclear DNA in a small number of modern and medieval bovine leather samples. The results of this preliminary investigation demonstrate that, while no nuclear DNA can be PCR-amplified from any of the specimens, mitochondrial DNA can be amplified from all samples. To investigate this contrasting pattern of DNA survival further, we have vegetable-tanned cow skin in our own laboratory, and directly assayed the survival of PCR-amplifiable mitochondrial and nuclear DNA at each step of the process. The results indicate that nuclear DNA is reduced to sub-amplifiable levels as a result of the tanning baths, whereas amplifiable mitochondrial DNA survives the complete process. Our results suggest that old and archaeological bovine leather may represent a useful source of genetic information, although this information will most likely be limited to that which can be gained from mitochondrial DNA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)823-829
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Archaeological Science
Volume34
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2007

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vegetables
Leather
Mitochondrial DNA
Medieval Period
Vegetables
Bath
Archaeology
Genetic Information

Keywords

  • Ancient DNA
  • Degradation
  • Leather
  • PCR
  • Tanning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Archaeology

Cite this

Vuissoz, A., Worobey, M., Odegaard, N. N., Bunce, M., Machado, C. A., Lynnerup, N., ... Gilbert, M. T. P. (2007). The survival of PCR-amplifiable DNA in cow leather. Journal of Archaeological Science, 34(5), 823-829. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2006.09.002

The survival of PCR-amplifiable DNA in cow leather. / Vuissoz, Annick; Worobey, Michael; Odegaard, Nancy N; Bunce, Michael; Machado, Carlos A.; Lynnerup, Niels; Peacock, Elizabeth E.; Gilbert, M. Thomas P.

In: Journal of Archaeological Science, Vol. 34, No. 5, 05.2007, p. 823-829.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Vuissoz, A, Worobey, M, Odegaard, NN, Bunce, M, Machado, CA, Lynnerup, N, Peacock, EE & Gilbert, MTP 2007, 'The survival of PCR-amplifiable DNA in cow leather', Journal of Archaeological Science, vol. 34, no. 5, pp. 823-829. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2006.09.002
Vuissoz, Annick ; Worobey, Michael ; Odegaard, Nancy N ; Bunce, Michael ; Machado, Carlos A. ; Lynnerup, Niels ; Peacock, Elizabeth E. ; Gilbert, M. Thomas P. / The survival of PCR-amplifiable DNA in cow leather. In: Journal of Archaeological Science. 2007 ; Vol. 34, No. 5. pp. 823-829.
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