A new ancient DNA study shows that 14th century plague outbreaks might have resulted from repeated introductions of Yersinia pestis to Europe. Commercial trade routes, including the fur trade routes, would have contributed to the rapid spread of plague in whole Europe during the Middle Ages.
By investigating the DNA of several species of sparrows, researchers at CEES have shown that the house sparrow diverged from a sparrow in the Middle East – and started to digest starch-rich foods – when humans developed agriculture.
When studying climate change, it is often a problem that reliable, comparable data go back just a few decades. Long time series are in high demand, especially when it comes to the Earth’s cryosphere, consisting of glaciers, ice and frozen ground.