View Full Version : Ancient eggshell protein breaks through DNA time barrier

09-28-2016, 01:46 PM

Scientists have identified fossil proteins in a 3.8 million year-old ostrich eggshell, suggesting that proteins could provide valuable new insights into the evolutionary tree, much further back in time than was previously thought.

The study, published in the journal eLife, suggests that survival of protein fragments in the ancient eggshell could provide genetic information almost 50 times older than any DNA record.

The findings shed new light on how animals and humans lived and interacted in the past, how some species became extinct, and why some evolved and continue to thrive today. Crucially, the research provides archaeologists with the ability to be more targeted in which fossils they submit for deeper analysis.

09-28-2016, 08:48 PM
Good on them for picking up 1960s science methods, instead of relying only on bright, shiny new DNA ones.

Used this as a Biochemistry undergrad in 1974 (sic) on modern samples.
We were told one name for this was Western blot. Wikipedia uses a 1979 source as its origin for that term.
I need to find out which time machine we used to go into the future!

Our lab teaching experiment relied on keratins as they were easily obtained from shed body parts (feathers, snake skins) or from naturally expired individuals.
So I guess they were teaching us ethics at the same time.

09-29-2016, 06:05 AM
One of the advantages of organic eggs