We are hiring!


One postdoc in Quaternary geology (stratigraphy) and palaeoecology

One PhD in palaeoecology and ancient DNA

One PhD in ancient DNA and marine genomics

One PhD in genomics, ecotoxicology and ecology of bumblebees

One postdoc in disease ecology and eDNA

Don't hesitate to get in touch if you would like more information about about any of these positions!

A new member in our group


A big welcome again to Angélica Cuevas! Angélica joins our group as (soon to be) postdoctoral researcher. She will be investigating the biological origin of ancient Atlantic cod specimens that were collected through our collaborative FOODIMPACT project in addition to  pursuing her own evolutionary interests.

A new paper by Giada is now out


Our new paper on aDNA preservation in fish bones is now out! A fantastic achievement, congratulations Giada!

New project funded!

Whoop whoop, new project funded by the Research Council of Norway! 12 million NOK for "EvoCave: Investigating 122 000 years of high-latitude faunal diversity using palaeozoology, archaeology, palaeoecology and ancient DNA". We'll be hiring a postdoc and a PhD student next year!

New paper on byrozoan museum specimens

New paper exploring the potential for DNA analyses of bryozoan specimens from museum collections

First paper from Anneke her PhD published

Congratulations to Anneke, check out her new paper published in Environmental DNA in whcih she uses eDNA to study dietary niche overlap.

Preprint of paper non puffin population genomics online

A preprint of our puffin population genomics paper is now available on bioRxiv. Congratulations to Oliver for reaching this great milestone, and what an excellent way to start his parental leave! Now fingers crossed for positive reviews :)

Collaborating on ERC Synergy Grant 4-OCEANS!

We're excited that the ERC Synergy Grant 4-OCEANS with PIs James Barrett, Poul Holm, Cristina Brito and Francis Ludlow has been funded! Archaeogenomics is a collaborating on this grant and we will have positions working on this ambituous project.

New paper from Oliver!


Congratulations to Oliver and the rest of the team with their latest paper on plague published in PNAS!

A genomic and historical synthesis of plague in 18th century Eurasia

New paper from Giada!


Congratulations to Giada for publishing another one of her PhD papers!

Variola virus genome sequenced from an eighteenth-century museum specimen supports the recent origin of smallpox

Zoom lab meetings and summer


Aye we've been really bad in keeping the site updated! But no fear we are still going strong :-) Everyone got used to working from home and in the past 2 months we have been slowly allowed back into the labs and even into the offices. Just as the rest of the world we have become experts in lab zoom meetings, but thankfully now also have occasional non-digital meetings again. In the mean time data is being produced and analysed, papers are being written, submitted and revised, grants applied for, etc. Have a nice summer everyone!

Image may contain: Person, Face, Facial expression, Head.

New paper published


Even's last paper of his PhD just came out in Applied and Environmental Microbiology. Congratulations! We use metagenomic shotgun sequencing to look at intra- and interspecific variation of the intestinal microbiome in a range of gadoid species and ecotypes.

New papers published


Our new paper on the potential impacts and societal consequences of the historic walrus ivory trade from Norse Greenland just came online. A really neat collaborative effort with James Barrett from the  University of Cambridge.

And also another paper to which our PhD student Oliver contributed, on the metagenomics of dental calculus in ancient Egyptian baboons.

Welcome to Lane and Emma


This month, we can welcome both Lane Atmore and Emma Falkeid to our group! Lane obtained her MSc from the University of Cambridge, working on adaptation and selection in  human populations using whole genome sequence data. She will work on her PhD here, using ancient DNA from Atlantic herring samples to investigate trade and human impacts as part of our SEACHANGES ITN network.  Emma has just finished her Bachelor degree, and will be working on her MSc, studying ancient Atlantic tuna samples (also together with Lane) in a collaborative project with Svein Nielsen from the Museum of Cultural History.

Welcome to Lulu


A BIG welcome to Lourdes Garcia!  Lourdes recently started with us to do her PhD. Originally from Mexico, Lourdes obtained her MSc degree from Lund University, where she studied population structure in eelgrasses. She will be working on the analyses of ancient DNA from Atlantic cod, and is part of our SEACHANGES ITN network.

New paper


Excited about our latest paper "Not a limitless resource: ethics and guidelines for destructive sampling of archaeofaunal remains" published in Royal Society Open Science! And special congratulations to Albina who came up with the idea for this paper and did the majority of the work. If you do destructive sampling of animals remains you should absolutely read this!



Anneke just came back from an archaeological field trip to Armenia for one of our newest projects, in collaboration with among others: the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography at the National Academy of Sciences in Yerevan and the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences and Humanities at the University of Tübingen. The cave site Aghitu-3 has proven to be rich in artefacts and bone from up to 39 000 years ago! Our aim will be to uncover something even less easily spotted: the ancient use of plants by the analysis of plant DNA present in the cave sediment.

The archaeological site Aghitu-3 as seen from the cave.
The archaeological excavation at Aghitu-3 as seen from the cave



Sanne and Anneke joined the coring team of the VIKINGS project for field work as the start of an exiting new collaboration with: UiO's Department of Geosciences, Department of ArchaeologyThe Centre for Earth Evolution and Dynamics, and the Department of Earth Science at the University of Bergen. 

The VIKINGS project aims reconstruct the climate of the early historic period, and resolve how volcanic eruptions and their environmental impacts facilitated societal changes during the Viking era. We'll be doing sedaDNA analyses to uncover the impact of human settlements on the plant species composition.

​​​The team waiting for equipment
Photo by Eirik Ballo
Anneke and Sanne, credits to Eirik








Image may contain: Vehicle, Paddle, Outdoor recreation, Water transportation, Waterway.
The coring set-up and a fresh 6 meter long sediment core going back roughly 10 000 years


Even Sannes Riiser, who has studied the intestinal microbiome of Atlantic cod using a range of high-throughput sequencing methods together will defend his PhD thesis this Friday!


We just published new aDNA perspective paper in Evolutionary Applications focusing on the potential of retrieving DNA from ancient fish remains with our collaborators from New Zealand and the United Kingdom. We also got the news this week that Tom Oosting (the first author) has received a travel grant for a visit to our laboratory again for about 6 to 7 weeks this autumn.  


New job opportunities at our group! We are hiring two new PhDs candidates, as part of the Seachanges Innovative Training Network, funded by the European Union. You can find the two positions and how to apply here and here. Please note that you have to apply before the 21th of May. This is a great opportunity to do a PhD and become part of an international, interdisciplinary research network. If you have any questions, contact Bastiaan Star.

Be sure to also check out the eligibility criteria.

This project is set to be funded by the European Union's EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation Horizon 2020 under Grant Agreement No. 813383, subject to the final conclusion and signing of the Grant Agreement. The European Research Agency is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.


And more funding news - we got a grant from Nansenfondet for our work on Atlantic puffins! It will be exciting to see this project unfold.



We're excited that the UiO:Life Sciences Convergence Environment project on Medical Plant use in the Age of Exploration (REA:Life) has been funded! Looking forward to being part of this great consortium and working on this exciting project across the social and natural sciences.


The Seachanges website has come online with details on the project organization and descriptions of the different research projects. The network takes a long-term perspective on human exploitation of marine vertebrates, with projects covering species from herring to sperm whale, timescales from decades to millennia, and all of Europe's seas and beyond! If you're interested in joining this network, you can express an early interest here. Be sure to also check out the eligibility criteria. The official hiring process will start from March 2019.

This project is set to be funded by the European Union's EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation Horizon 2020 under Grant Agreement No. 813383, subject to the final conclusion and signing of the Grant Agreement. The European Research Agency is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.


The Marie Curie innovative Training Network "Seachanges: Thresholds in human exploitation of marine vertebrates" was just funded! This project will train 15 PhD students on the interface between biology and archaeology and is headed by Dr. David Orton from the University of York. Bastiaan is beneficiary for Oslo and will supervise two PhD candidates who will investigate various fish species using aDNA. Sanne is also part of the ITN and helps out co-supervising PhD candidates who have their secondments at CEES. 


Our paper on sexing Viking Age horses in Iceland has just been published! Congratulations and a great thanks to everyone who has contributed.


Bastiaan returned from a field expedition in northern Norway, together with Stein-Erik Lauritzen from the University of Bergen. The aim was to collected sediments from a rather old cave deposit (estimated to be over 100K years old) for sedaDNA analyses to reconstruct the species composition of past communities. This is a bone-rich deposit and we found several macrofossils, amongst others a beautifully preserved polar bear claw bone.

The cave team
The cave team
The deposit
Polar bear claw



Tom Oosting from Wellington, New Zealand visited us and presented his project. Tom is a PhD candidate with Peter Richie at VIC, and Bastiaan is collaborating with them on his project studying fisheries induced selection in New Zealand snapper. We just sequenced the first ancient snapper samples for testing that were extracted by Nic Rawlence and his team in Dunedin and we aim to do quite a few more!

Back to the top


Bastiaan just returned from a field trip on beautiful Arnøya, in Norway's far north, with Gørill Nilsen, Johan Arntzen, and Jørn Henriksen from the University of Tromsø. We partially excavated a number of slab-lined pits. These pits were used to produce oil from marine mammals, but its unclear what species were targeted. We'll use sedimentary ancient DNA to see if we can find an answer.

The Lyngen Alps, on the way to Arnøya
The Lyngen Alps, on the way to Arnøya
The team: Bastiaan, Jørn, Johan, Gørill and Rudolf, the dog
Gørill and Jørn in action. The lining of slabs in the foreground is clear.

Back to the top


Our new paper on the historic walrus ivory trade from Greenland just came out in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B and is featured on many news websites including National Geographic, the New York Times and Science!

Back to the top


Albina wrote about one of her favourite recipes on Cooking with Archaeologists.

Back to the top


Albina has written a piece about her project and the sampling she did in York, which is now published on the website of the York Archaeological Trust!

Back to the top

Published Oct. 11, 2018 8:54 AM - Last modified Feb. 1, 2021 9:05 PM