Malaria Killed King Tut

Malaria Killed King Tut - February17,2010

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
February 17, 2010 Malaria Is a Likely Killer in King Tut’s Post- Mortem By  JOHN NOBLE WILFORD King  Tutankhamen , the boy pharaoh, was frail and lame and suffered  “multiple disorders” when he died at age 19 about 1324 B.C., but  scientists have now determined the most likely agents of death: a  severe bout of  malaria  combined with a degenerative bone condition. The researchers said that to their knowledge “this is the oldest genetic  proof of malaria in precisely dated mummies.” Several other  mummies in the study also showed  DNA evidence  of the presence of  the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, perhaps not surprising in  a place like the Nile Valley. The application of advanced radiological and genetic techniques to  royal Egyptian mummies is a new step in the ever deepening reach of  historical inquiry through science. The study, reported Tuesday, turned up no evidence of foul play, as  had been suspected by some historians and popular writers familiar  with palace intrigues in ancient Egypt. Previous examinations of the Tut mummy had revealed a leg  fracture   that happened sometime before his death, possibly from a fall. This  might have contributed to a life-threatening condition in an immune  system already weakened by malaria and other disorders, the  researchers said.
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
In addition, genetic “fingerprinting” of the 11 mummies in the study  established family connections over five generations of Tut’s lineage.  The identities were previously certain for only three of the mummies.  Now, scientists said, the tests have identified the mummies of King 
Background image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Page1 / 5

Malaria Killed King Tut - February17,2010

This preview shows document pages 1 - 3. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online