Thursday, May 3, 2012

Ötzi the Iceman: scientists find 5,000-year-old blood sample

Oldest blood sample ever retrieved sheds new light on Ötzi's death and may help improve understanding of blood aging

Otzi the Iceman
Ötzi the Iceman was found frozen solid in the Italian Alps in 1991. Photograph: Andrea Solero/AFP/Getty Images
As cold cases go, it does not get much colder than Ötzi the Iceman, whose body was found frozen solid in the Italian Alps 5,300 years after he died from an arrow wound.

Since he was discovered by trekkers in 1991, scientists have mapped his DNA and figured out everything from what ailments he suffered from (Lyme disease and a weak heart) to the last meal he ate (venison and ibex) before he was shot in the back, probably by an enemy tribesman.

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