Scientists Have Sequenced the DNA of a 2000-Year-Old Human From Pompeii

Pompeii Body

The discoveries show that ancient DNA can be recovered from Pompeiian human bones, providing new insight into this historic community’s genetic history and lifestyles.

The first Pompeiian human genome has been sequenced.

Research that was recently published in Scientific Reports presents the first human genome that has been successfully sequenced from a person who passed away in Pompeii, Italy, after Mount Vesuvius’ explosion in the year 79 CE. Only little segments of mitochondrial DNA from Pompeiian human and animal remains have been sequenced up to this point.

The DNA of two people’s bones that were discovered in Pompeii’s House of the Craftsman was studied and extracted by Gabriele Scorrano and colleagues. The bones’ length, form, and structure revealed that one pair belonged to a male who was between 35 and 40 years old when he passed away, while the other set belonged to a female who was over 50. The authors were able to extract and sequence ancient DNA from both people, but since the sequences from the female’s bones had gaps in them, they could only sequence the entire genome from the male’s remains.

The male subject’s DNA was compared to 1,030 ancient and 471 current western Eurasian subjects, and it was found that the male subject’s DNA was most comparable to that of modern central Italians and other people who resided in Italy during the Roman Imperial era. However, studies of the male’s Y chromosome and mitochondrial DNA revealed sets of genes that are often prevalent in Sardinian people but not in other people who resided in Italy during the Roman Imperial era. This shows that the Italian Peninsula may have seen high levels of genetic diversity at the time.

Additional analyses of the male individual’s skeleton and DNA identified lesions in one of the vertebrae and DNA sequences that are commonly found in Mycobacterium, the group of bacteria that the tuberculosis-causing bacteria Mycobacterium tuberculosis belongs to. This suggests that the individual may have been affected by tuberculosis prior to his death.

The authors speculate that it may have been possible to successfully recover ancient DNA from the male individual’s remains as pyroclastic materials released during the eruption could have provided protection from DNA-degrading environmental factors, such as atmospheric oxygen. The findings demonstrate the possibility to retrieve ancient DNA from Pompeiian human remains and provide further insight into the genetic history and lives of this population, they add.

Reference: “Bioarchaeological and palaeogenomic portrait of two Pompeians that died during the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD” by Gabriele Scorrano, Serena Viva, Thomaz Pinotti, Pier Francesco Fabbri, Olga Rickards, and Fabio Macciardi, 26 May 2022, Scientific Reports.
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-022-10899-1

48 Comments on "Scientists Have Sequenced the DNA of a 2000-Year-Old Human From Pompeii"

  1. Who wrote this?.. “and DNA sequences that are commonly found in Mycobacterium, the group of bacteria that the tuberculosis-causing bacteria Mycobacterium tuberculosis belongs to.”

  2. Well if you read the top right before the article started it says “SPRINGER NATURE.” Wrote it. At the end it gives citations.

  3. How dare you misgender this creature. I believe it’s actually non-binary upside-down backwards inside-out genderless asexual morph bondage furry. Wow so unprogressive.

    • Lmao is that really necessary, especially in this post?

    • You have one joke and it’s not funny.

      They use the correct term to refer to genitalia and chromosomes. Try learning the difference between sex and gender.

      • SORRYNotSORRY | July 17, 2022 at 10:56 am | Reply

        It would not be difficult to do this if it wasn’t for the fact that people who share you ideologies have decided to hijack the English language and change definitions to words and phrases that for decades if not centuries have meant something else
        So excuse us if we can’t keep up with the ever changing venacular you choose to engage in. The unwoke choose to engage in the English language that Webster touted 5 years ago before Webster got “Woke”. You shouldn’t discriminate against the unwoke. Don’t be an “unwokeaphobic”

        • Well sex and gender started being differentiated in 1955, although “gender” wasn’t officially adopted as a term until the 80s. It was created because a word for how a person lived needed to be made since it is not always the same as someone’s sex. They’re similar enough that non-scientists often use them as synonyms, but they were different from the beginning.

      • Assuming by the “Frank”,you would be of the y chromosome, you know, sex=male,gender=masculine, aka he,him,sir,swinging john…could be mistaken on the sir,what gender,sex is the stinkhole, don’t say all of them. Let’s invent a new one shall we

    • What an idiot…..

  4. So loving this!!!! MORE posts like THESE, please!

  5. Thanks for the article. This sentence needs to be re-written. “The authors speculate that it may have been possible to successfully recover ancient DNA from the male individual’s remains as pyroclastic materials released during the eruption may have provided protection from DNA-degrading environmental factors, such as atmospheric oxygen.”

  6. Law suit larry | July 17, 2022 at 6:52 am | Reply

    Pompeii officials knew their people were in danger and did nothing.

    Are you a direct decendant of a Pompeii victim? If so, you may be entitled to a structured settlement.

  7. SorryNotSorry | July 17, 2022 at 10:40 am | Reply

    DG you cracked me up! I believe you are being facetious but in today’s society yours could be a sincere comment from a endoctrinated individual. But fascinating article regardless of the gender. Maybe scientists can settle on the 2 gender theory someday. Maybe they already have. Lol!

  8. David Parrott | July 17, 2022 at 11:35 am | Reply

    DG takes the best vomment of the day gor sure.

  9. I am just relieved that the DNA was not from some black African, if it had been we would never hear the end of it. How Pompeii was build by Africans and Italy was African ancestral land.

  10. Run the dna thru the database and try to fine relative of them…

  11. Frank,what sex/gender is a stinkhole? Now don’t say both or all of them

  12. Can someone tell me why having DNA sequences for a male and female is so important? Please tell!!

  13. Scion of Alkebulan | July 18, 2022 at 2:31 am | Reply

    Sorry to deprive you of your immaculate Caucasian genetics ideologies, and the life-long trauma to your ego that will ensue, but all humans carry Subsaharan African DNA.
    Check the National Geographic Geno 2.0 project for an excellent view of how we all came originally from Sub Saharan Africa and we all still share that same core DNA.
    Quote: ‘The Genographic Project is creating a picture of when and where ancient humans moved around the world by mapping the genetic markers in modern peoples. These great migrations eventually led the descendants of a small group of Africans to occupy even the farthest reaches of the earth.’

    • So? All animals come from Earth. It’s not our similarities that make us the same, it is our differences that make us different.

  14. Scotty,everyone who is educated understands all races migrated from africa and when they did they’re features,eye colors changed because of the regions they were in! No hot African sun in london,japan,china etc.their skin and hair changed.Google is for people like you who are uneducated so please google cheddar man! This science paper on Pompeii is about what happened telling later on. Remember google the great migration, and Cheddar man! First man in London was black Cheddar man!

    • That’s not his point. The news articles won’t mention whites are African too. So they will celebrate the black man like he is something special…is what I think he meant. I don’t understand why that went over people’s heads

  15. Rhonda Ingram | July 18, 2022 at 12:00 pm | Reply

    Scotty,the genetic dna study of the sardinia people in a 2018 said their DNA was of euroasian and the horn of Africa in ancient times! All races have traces of African in their DNA because we all come from the great African migration! Please google if you haven’t graduated or been to school!

  16. Sorrynotsorry… I just want to say Amen

  17. Bryan De La Torre | July 18, 2022 at 4:46 pm | Reply

    @ Rhonda Ing. Obviously, people are not educated. Your comment Is not a fact. Sardania has no euro, asian DNA! Italians have Germanic and visigoths bloodline. Sorry to burst your bubble with false theories and statements.

  18. I can’t help but wonder… Is there a legitimate and necessary reason for them to be doing this to these people’s bodies? I fail to see why the genetic diversity of people who lived a couple thousand years ago matters to us today enough that we feel the need to dig up bodies and scrape at their bones. This is why I plan to be cremated.

  19. @Scotty lolol. That was funny but don’t be like that.

  20. Lost me after CE reference…

  21. @scotty your the best for that comment. All these people claim we all come from Africa. Sure but when it’s convenient they separate races for their arguments. God forbid I say what I want to say because I’m from Africa too even though I’m Indian.

  22. Are White people really racist everywhere ? Like you can’t even read through the comment sections without encountering people suffering from such disease and low vibrational energy. Yuck!

  23. @Roman c how pathetic of you to consign such ignorance. Are you triggered because so called Black people are researching and finding their TRUE purpose and history on this planet? It’s a known fact that Black people were on this earth ions before anyone else, so why is it so hard to believe we are found everywhere? Your jealousy blends well with your ignorance. Im glad I came across your comment to see how some of you Indians feel. As DARK as your people are, you would imagine you’d not hate other melinated beings, but is proof that you hate yourself. You’re even worse than the the Scotty idiot. What a disgusting excuse for a human being you are.

  24. Paul McCarthy | July 19, 2022 at 9:55 am | Reply

    All Africans are a descendent of CAIN .ln the Bible he killed his brother Able. He was punished for that by being expelled from his land and having all black children.Blacks are a curse.

  25. This is amazing.Like CSI out of the antient World.

  26. Wonderful article! Appreciate the research, obviously people are curious in their nature, that’s how we evolve! And surely people are interested to know who could be the modern descendant of ancient Romans and whether these poor men and women that fell victims to the power of nature, in shape of the eruption of Mount Vesuvius (volcano if you wish).

    Can’t stop laughing at those folks that call each other uneducated while they themselves can’t even properly write well-known names of locations or other vivid terms mentioned in the article itself, just a bloody lust to prove that they’re right and woke up to time, while the rest should be wrong and apologetic towards them, that’s the exact example of declining civilization…

    Sure , as some people have mentioned so eagerly in the comments before, Africans,or better say first hominids came from Africa , but it doesn’t justify the sayings as if Romans are Africans or Mongolian hordes and Vikings were of the same kind(Romans having partially Eurasian and North African DNA doesn’t mean that they were influenced by those people living there now, that’s probably the opposite, study Roman and Greek conquests to the East, just as Romans reaching up to China (they still occasionally find some local people in central and western regions of Asia (Central Asia,China, Mongolia) seemingly Asians, but with partial European traits as blue eyes and light hair, myself being a witness to that during my staying in that region) through Caucasus and Greeks constantly interacting with Scythians(ancestors of modern folks from Caucasus, Slavic people and some of modern Western and Central Asians) and Macedonians conquering the wild places at northern India or modern Afghan territories, look at the amphitheatres built in northern parts of Africa, check the names as Herculanum and so on, that place had surely been colonized by Greeks and Romans and anyone else they brought along (like Germanic people) that have indeed brought their DNA there, check out the Berbers if you’re so eager to prove whatever?!
    Yeah, they have certain evolutionary connection, but indeed t’s same as calling a helicopter or a smace shuttle a flying carpet, or calling a Ferrari or Koenigsegg as a donkey pulled chariot .

    That is same illegitimate thing as a colonial theory brought by British and some of German nazis, the so-called “indo-european ancestry” , that was invented to justify the occupation of those regions in southern Asian peninsula and Tibet, the theory based more than 2 centuries ago, with many drawbacks in it. Same with this “everyone’s African, let’s celebrate the brown folks and forget about the rest” thing that doesn’t even deserve to be called a culture, but rather a reversed racism or Nazism.

    • Edit : whether these poor men and women that fell victims to the power of nature, in shape of the eruption of Mount Vesuvius (volcano if you wish) have modern day relatives.

  27. Tripping balls | July 20, 2022 at 3:11 am | Reply

    Looks like Roger from American dad.

  28. It’s incredible how these people died. Frightening! And, amazing that we have that moment frozen in time. I’m fascinated by their dna profile and how similar they were to modern humans. It’s a small world, even across the lines of time.

  29. Could it be possible that Pompeii was a place where the sick and dying of the upper classes could go to live out the end of their life quarantined. With all the sexually explicit motif maybe it was a place of pure debauchery and vice. Or a type of Sin City, if you will. Where disease was rampant.

  30. Now that “the first human genome that has been successfully sequenced from a person who passed away in Pompeii, Italy” can you use the DNA to find any serviving descendants using something like ?

  31. Read the bible, it explains it all and is very easy to understand even for the “woke”….

  32. I like how rightoids all of a sudden decided to make this about “woke” culture; as if people on the left actually use the term woke anymore because it’s been regurgitated by proto-ganglia touting individuals.
    Just get over yourselves. I just wanted to read an article about human DNA sequences mysteries being shed a light or two. And sure the author ought to use they instead of he as we do not know their gender, but no one sensible would bring it up because it’s just not a big deal. But you always get the thin-skinned troglodyte emerging from their primordial lair having to screech about everything because their sad little lives revolve around their hatred and ignorance.

  33. It’s either male or female… THAT’S IT…so STOP the bs

  34. If the male had Tuberculosis(TB)the likelihood that other residents from the area were afflicted as well. The eruption and subsequent hot ash and gases fallout solved that.

  35. Ihr seit einfach nur noch peinlich.ich geh sogar noch weiter ..da will ein Mensch informieren mehr nicht.Ihr macht daraus aber einen Kindergarten…von Genderwahnsprache bis Besserwissertheorien.So und jetzt sag ich auch was dazu..Der Mensch egal ob weiblich ,männlich ,er sie es oder jeglicher Färbung ( Nationalität) oder was auch immer,gehört ausradiert und weg von dieser Erde.keiner hat diese Erde verdient . Keiner!Wir bekriegen uns zerstören uns und wir nennen uns ach so modern und zivilisiert ..Arme Welt .. Pfui über die Menschheit…und das nicht erst seit Gestern.Weg mit der Menschheit sie ist der größte widerlichste Parasit .Pfui,Pfui….

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