For TB Clues, Researchers Turn to Bones
Key to disease's evolution may lie in 6,000-year-old DNA
By Dustin Lushing,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 14, 2008 6:50 PM CDT
Scientists are analyzing bones found in the biblical city of Jericho for clues to fighting tuberculosis.
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(Newser) – Scientists are analyzing bones found in the ancient city of Jericho, in what's now the West Bank, for clues to fighting tuberculosis. The German, Israeli, and Palestinian researchers hope the 6,000-year-old DNA they're studying will reveal how the disease evolves and how to combat it.

"We see a re-emerging wave of tuberculosis all over the world and ... perhaps learning from the past will help us understand the present," said a German professor. TB is believed to have originated in the Middle East 10,000 years ago. Evidence from the bones, unearthed 50 years ago, indicates that the infection was widespread.