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800,000 year old mammoth DNA, modern elephant DNA or PCR artefact?

, Binladen J, Gilbert MT, Willerslev E. , Niels Bohr Institute and Biological Institute, University of Copenhagen

Poulakakis and colleagues (Poulakakis et al. 2006: Biol. Lett. 2, 451-454), report the recovery of 'authentic' mammoth DNA from an 800,000-year-old fragment of bone excavated on the island of Crete. In light of results from other ancient DNA studies that indicate how DNA survival is unlikely in samples, which are recovered from warm environments and are relatively old (e.g. more than 100,000 years), these findings come as a great surprise.



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