Archaeogene Project concerns the detection and systematic recording of the microbial flora and biodiversity in an archaeological excavation, as a model of innovative research and development in the general field of Archaeology. Note that the field is located in embryonic level, with a very broad potential, since the most famous example of archaeological excavation dates back to the 12th century AD, on European soil. Using metagenomics methods, will reach the accurate detection of biodiversity, as well as the search for other traces of archaeological of interest, in an excavation that goes back almost a thousand years earlier for the first time, for the first time in the world. Using metagenomics methods, we will reach the accurate detection of biodiversity, as well as the search for other traces of archaeological of interest, in an excavation that goes back almost a thousand years, for the first time in the world.
What is Archaeogene?
The aim of Archaeogene Project is the design and evaluation of an integrated system for the application of metagenomics of built environments in archaeological excavations, in the form of technological development and IT services. The Camber4 system (for the recording of microbial communities in the subsoil around the archaeological excavation and structures or other finds). The studies carried out worldwide are primarily areas of highest interest, with many monuments and finds under the auspices and protection of the UNESCO. The results obtained with this approach are of great interest, not only for drawing conclusions in Archaeology but also for the protection and conservation of finds. New technologies make it possible to record biodiversity and accurately measure the quantification in every archaeological survey, based on specific gene-biomarkers up to the complete decoding of new genomes. Sampling may be carried out in spatial fields or over a period of time, while correlations of genetic material with other parameters provide guidance for optimal and more effective protection. The type of microbial community guides the extraction and documentation of conclusions for nutritional or epidemiological details as well as protection or conservation.
Goal of the Archaeogene Project
The Archaeogene Project will be a model of excellence at national level with global reach, because of the exceptional importance of archaeological research for the country and the global community. The Archaeogene Project based on pioneering, for national and international standards, interdisciplinary research and development in the the application of metagenomics of the artificial environment in archaeological excavation, with the contribution of scientists in bio-sciences, Archaeology and informatics. Archaeogene Project will focus on the following:
- Designing the strategy for sampling & defining protocols. Performing bioinformatic analysis to further interpret the samples.
- Development of an integrated methodology for the translation of the results into specific excavation.
- Development of a detailed analysis of the results of the excavation, with the recording of archaeological metadata.
The companies cooperating in the project are, DNA Sequence SRL Hellas and DiagnosisMultisystems
The subcontractor of the project is the Hellenic Research Institute of the Alexandrian Civilization.