The Junior Research Group for Ancient DNA (aDNA) Analysis was established in January 2014. Its main interest is to investigate how pathogens and changes in nutrition and subsistence strategies have shaped our genome over the last millennia. The underlying evolutionary processes also have important implications for modern civilisation and inflammatory diseases.
Over the last decade, novel capture and sequencing technologies have been developed that render aDNA studies highly sensitive and their results considerably more reliable. Genomic analyses of smallest amounts of highly degraded DNA can now be carried out. The combination of aDNA and genomic methodologies has considerably advanced the whole field and allows us to trace molecular evolutionary changes through time, practically watching as they are happening. In 2014, the existing aDNA laboratory will be replaced with a new, state-of-the-art facility that expands the range of the analytical toolkit and research potential even further.