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DNA FROM ANCIENT STONE TOOLS AND BONES EXCAVATED AT BUGAS-HOLDING, WYOMING
SHANKS, O. C., L. HODGES, L. TILLEY, M. KORNFELD, M. LARSON, AND W. REAM. DNA FROM ANCIENT STONE TOOLS AND BONES EXCAVATED AT BUGAS-HOLDING, WYOMING. Presented at Chacmool International Archaeology Conference 2005, Tools of the Trade: Methods, Techniques and Innovative Approaches to Archaeology, Unv. of Calgary , Calgary, AB, CANADA, November 10 - 13, 2005.
To inform the public
Traces of DNA may preserve on ancient stone tools. We examined 24 chipped stone artifacts recovered from the Bugas-Holding site in northwestern Wyoming for the presence of DNA residues, and we compared DNA preservation in bones and stone tools from the same stratigraphic context. Nine tools harbored canid DNA, and four bison bones (of six tested) yielded bison DNA. Some of the canid sequences showed evidence of lesions common in ancient DNA. Archaeologists did not handle three of the DNA-containing tools with bare hands, which suggests that the canid DNA recovered from them was present prior to excavation. We found DNA from dog, mule deer, and cat on one stone tool, and we observed competition between these DNA templates during polymerase chain reaction amplification. DNA residue analysis supports earlier studies that indicated a butchery pattern typical of a human population under resource stress.
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