The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #172240   Message #4168299
Posted By: Helen
24-Mar-23 - 05:39 PM
Thread Name: Beethoven's death - DNA project
Subject: Beethoven's death - DNA project
Interesting news article this week and importantly, a previous DNA analysis was not done on an authentic lock of hair from Beethoven:

Beethoven's DNA from a tuft of hair reveals new insights into his health and family

"While the genome, published on Thursday in the journal Current Biology, can't tell us exactly what killed him, it reveals he had a genetic predisposition to liver disease and was infected by hepatitis B at some point in his life."

....

"Over the past 196 years, scientists have debated what could have caused the famous musician's poor health, with some earlier research based on hair analysis suggesting he may have had lead poisoning."

....

"They were able to rule out three locks of hair, including one known as the Hillier lock. This sample, which had led to the earlier suggestion of lead poisoning, actually came from a woman."

Some of the many existing locks of hair which were supposedly from Beethoven were not his. The latest project tested all of those locks labelled with his name and identified the authentic ones.