by Ron Pinhasi,
Department of Evolutionary Anthropology, University of Vienna
Ancient DNA has revolutionized the study of migrations and the interactions between past populations. During the past 4 years there was a major increase in the number of genome-wide human aDNA studies, some of which now provide paleogenomic data for 100s of prehistoric individuals from numerous archaeological cultures. However, the predominant focus of most studies on Eurasian prehistoric cultures has left certain temporal and geographic gaps. There is also a growing concern regarding the damage is caused by most current bone sampling methods to various skeletal collections. The talk will report address these aspects by discussing the following : (1) new sampling methods which minimize damage to skeletal collections and/or optimize ancient DNA yields, (2) studies of prehistoric cultures from non-temperate world regions, and (3) our new results on the genetic legacy of the Roman Empire.