Ancient DNA inside archaeological ceramics from Greek shipwrecks

Project: Research

Research areas and keywords

UKÄ subject classification

  • Archaeology
  • Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Classical Archaeology and Ancient History


We have through a collaboration between Sweden - USA -Greece developed a method to isolate and identify small fragments of ancient DNA trapped inside the ceramic matrix of underwater amphoras. By a non-invasive swabbing method we trap DNA that can reveal what these today seemingly 'empty' jars on the Greek seafloor once contained. Our analyses have so far identified both olive and grape DNA, but also spices which may have used to flavor liquids and food products carried inside the ceramic containers.
Short titleAncient DNA in Greek Ancient Amphoras
Effective start/end date2007/06/01 → …


Related research output

Brendan Foley, Maria Hansson, Kourkoumelis, D. P. & Theodoulou, T. A., 2012, In : Journal of Archaeological Science. 39, 2, p. 389-398

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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