magazine_ Interview


Ötzi and his ‘tenants’

An interview with Albert Zink, Head of the Institute for Mummy Studies at Eurac Research.

© Eurac Research/Annelie Bortolotti
19 September 2020by Sigrid Hechensteiner, Barbara Baumgartner

Which microbes lived on and in Ötzi? What did the intestinal flora of our ancestors look like and which pathogens afflicted them? How has bacterial colonization changed over time? Thanks to technological advancements, mummy researchers are now able to investigate such questions. Today’s microbiome research on millennia-old test subjects not only provides new insights into the development of the human species - modern medicine also benefits from it.

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