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Book Sections Year : 2021

Anemias in Prehistoric Cyprus

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The site of Khirokitia, which illustrates the last phase of the Aceramic Neolithic in Cyprus, yielded a large series of human remains (MNI = 243) showing an unusual age distribution. The juvenile sample includes a high proportion of infants less than one year old, mostly perinates. Furthermore, porotic bone lesions, that might suggest anemia have been frequently observed on the juvenile sample. Taking into account the ancient origin of some ß-thalassemias in the Mediterranean Basin, the hypothesis of prehistoric thalassemia in the Eastern Mediterranean, put forward by J. L. Angel in the 1960s, can be reconsidered, using the data from Khirokitia. For this purpose, we have undertaken an innovative interdisciplinary study combining anthropological and paleopathological analyses, digital imaging and isotopic studies. Promising preliminary results, regarding the microstructural analysis of bones through digital imaging techniques support the hemoglobinopathy hypothesis.
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halshs-03416436 , version 1 (29-08-2022)


  • HAL Id : halshs-03416436 , version 1


Françoise Le Mort, Bérénice Chamel, Pascale Perrin, Estelle Herrscher, Vincent Balter, et al.. Anemias in Prehistoric Cyprus: Insights from Khirokitia. Michelle Gamble. Overcoming Issues of Past Preservation: Recent Research in Bioarchaeology in Cyprus, 19, Holzhausen, pp.53-64, 2021, Ergänzungshefte zu den Jahresheften des Österreichischen Archäologischen Institutes, 978-3-903207-57-8. ⟨halshs-03416436⟩
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