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LZU PhD Student Zhang et al. publish thesis on Journal of Archaeological Science

By LZU | 30/06/2017 09:54:00 | Views ()

On 23rd June, LZU PhD Student Zhang Naimeng et al. from The Key Laboratory of Western China’s Environmental Systems published    Diet reconstructed from an analysis of plant microfossils in human dental calculus from the Bronze Age site of Shilinggang southwestern China        on Journal of Archaeological Science, the world-renowned archeological journal. Zhang's supervisor is Academician Chen Fahu.

The abstract of the thesis is as follows:

The extracted microfossils from the dental calculus of ancient teeth are a new form of archaeological evidence which can provide direct information on the plant diet of a population. Here, we present the results of analyses of starch grains and phytoliths trapped in the dental calculus of humans who occupied the Bronze Age site of Shilinggang (2500 cal yr BP) in Yunnan Province, southwestern China. The results demonstrate that the inhabitants consumed a wide range of plants, including rice, millet, and palms, together with other food plants which have not previously been detected in Yunnan. The discovery of various underground storage organs (USOs; tubers, roots, bulbs, and rhizomes) and acorns complements the application of conventional macrofossil and isotope studies to understand the diet of the Bronze Age human population of Yunnan. The wide variety of plant foods consumed suggests that the inhabitants adopted a broad-spectrum strategy of gathering food and cultivating crops in northwest Yunnan Province in the late Bronze Age at a time when agricultural societies were developed in the central plains of China.

Journal of Archaeological Science is the only authoritative journal included by SCI, SSCI and A&HCI in the international community of archaeometry. The first author of the thesis is LZU PhD student Zhang Naimeng, the first corresponding author LZU Prof. Dong Guanghui, the joint corresponding author researcher Yang Xiaoyan from Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

In recent two years, LZU graduate students in LZU's Northwest China and Central Asia environmental archaeology center published as the first author a number of high-level theses, including Dr. Li Hu's two theses in Holocene and Vegetation History and Archaeobotany, Dr. Yang Yishi's in Holocene, PhD student Ren Lele's in Plos One and Quatemary International, PhD student Li Haiming's in Quatemary International and Science China: Earth Science, all as the first author, which embodies the relatively high-level quality of talent cultivation of LZU’s environmental archaeology.


(Translated by Zhang Lu; proofread by Li Qi)


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