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Archaeology Uncovers Infectious Disease Spread 4000 Years ago

Phys.org
Photo: CC0 Public Domain

Phys.org

New bioarchaeology research from a University of Otago Ph.D. candidate has shown how infectious diseases may have spread 4000 years ago, while highlighting the dangers of letting such diseases run rife.

Yaws - from the same bacteria species responsible for syphilis (Treponema pallidum) - is a childhood disease causing highly infectious skin lesions. It is spread via touch from person to person and, in advanced cases, can leave sufferers with severe bone disfigurement. While it is easily curable in its early stages, the bone disfigurements are irreversible.

The disease has been eradicated from much of ...