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Article contents

Parasite infection at the early farming community of Çatalhöyük

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  31 May 2019

Marissa L. Ledger
Affiliation:
Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge, The Henry Wellcome Building, Fitzwilliam Street, Cambridge CB2 1QH, UK
Evilena Anastasiou
Affiliation:
Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge, The Henry Wellcome Building, Fitzwilliam Street, Cambridge CB2 1QH, UK
Lisa-Marie Shillito
Affiliation:
School of History, Classics and Archaeology, Armstrong Building, Newcastle University, Newcastle NE1 7RU, UK
Helen Mackay
Affiliation:
School of History, Classics and Archaeology, Armstrong Building, Newcastle University, Newcastle NE1 7RU, UK
Ian D. Bull
Affiliation:
School of Chemistry, University of Bristol, Cantock's Close, Bristol BS8 1TS, UK
Scott D. Haddow
Affiliation:
Department of Archaeology and Art History, College of Social Sciences and Humanities, Koç University, Fakültesi Rumelifeneri Yolu, Sarıyer, İstanbul 34450, Turkey
Christopher J. Knüsel
Affiliation:
UMR 5199 PACEA, University of Bordeaux, Bâtiment B8, Allée Geoffroy Saint Hilaire, CS 50023, Pessac Cedex 33615, France
Piers D. Mitchell*
Affiliation:
Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge, The Henry Wellcome Building, Fitzwilliam Street, Cambridge CB2 1QH, UK
*
*Author for correspondence (Email: pdm39@cam.ac.uk)

Abstract

The early village at Çatalhöyük (7100–6150 BC) provides important evidence for the Neolithic and Chalcolithic people of central Anatolia. This article reports on the use of lipid biomarker analysis to identify human coprolites from midden deposits, and microscopy to analyse these coprolites and soil samples from human burials. Whipworm (Trichuris trichiura) eggs are identified in two coprolites, but the pelvic soil samples are negative for parasites. Çatalhöyük is one of the earliest Eurasian sites to undergo palaeoparasitological analysis to date. The results inform how intestinal parasitic infection changed as humans modified their subsistence strategies from hunting and gathering to settled farming.

Type
Research
Copyright
Copyright © Antiquity Publications Ltd, 2019 

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