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Science: Secrets of 5,700-year-old chewing gum

“In Denmark, archaeologists have unearthed a 5,700-year-old type of ‘chewing gum’ with a complete ancient human genome of a likely dark-skinned, dark-haired and blue-eyed woman closely related to the hunter-gatherers from mainland Europe” (artist’s reconstruction, left), The Hill reports (story here).

“’It is amazing to have gotten a complete ancient human genome from anything other than bone,’’ lead researcher Hannes Schroeder, an associate professor at the University of Copenhagen, said in a release from the university. ‘What is more, we also retrieved DNA from oral microbes and several important human pathogens, which makes this a very valuable source of ancient DNA.'”

The abc* gum (right) was found at Denmark’s largest Stone Age excavation site, encased and preserved in mud. Good thing Republicans weren’t around then, because they would’ve made it illegal as part of their “culture war” against hunter-gatherers.

*already been chewed

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