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Identifying bird remains using ancient DNA barcoding

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Author(s)

Love Dalén, Vendela K. Lagerholm, Johan A. A. Nylander, Nick Barton, Zbigniew M. Bochenski, Teresa Tomek, David Rudling, Per G. P. Ericson, Martin Irestedt, John R. Stewart

Abstract

Bird remains that are difficult to identify taxonomically using morphological methods, are common in the palaeontological record. Other types of challenging avian material include artefacts and food items from endangered taxa, as well as remains from aircraft strikes. We here present a DNA-based method that enables taxonomic identification of bird remains, even from material where the DNA is heavily degraded. The method is based on the amplification and sequencing of two short variable parts of the 16S region in the mitochondrial genome. To demonstrate the applicability of this approach, we evaluated the method on a set of Holocene and Late Pleistocene postcranial bird bones from several palaeontological and archaeological sites in Europe with good success.

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Original languageEnglish
Article number169
Number of pages8
JournalGenes
Volume8
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jun 2017

    Research areas

  • 16S, Archaeology, Aves, Biodiversity, Palaeogenetics, Palaeontology, Species identification

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