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The project will research new analytical methodologies for investigating parasites from museum and archaeological collections to understand diet and life history signals from the past. The student will use standard insect identification techniques together with isotopic, DNA and other analytical approaches to investigate life history signals from both parasites and hosts using museum and archaeological specimens. The National Museums of Scotland and the University of Oxford Natural History Museum collections will be used to analyse samples from control and historic specimens to establish the methodologies before applying to archaeological materials. Parasites from preserved human and animal mummies from S. America will be investigated as a final element of the project to establish the nature of the preserved signals.

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