Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Significance Of Milk In Development Of Culture To Be Studied

Date:
September 4, 2008
Source:
Uppsala Universitet
Summary:
The capacity to drink and tolerate milk may have been of tremendous importance for the cultural development of Europe. Researchers will now study when and where this capacity emerged and what it entailed.

The capacity to drink and tolerate milk may have been of tremendous importance for the cultural development of Europe. In a major EU project, being launched today and coordinated by Uppsala University in Sweden, researchers will now study when and where this capacity emerged and what it entailed.

Lactose tolerance, which provides the ability to drink milk as an adult, varies across countries. In Scandinavia, excluding Finland, it is widely disseminated. Most of us tolerate dairy products without any problems. The question of just where this ability arose and how it spread has spawned various theories. By gathering 15 research teams with different specializations in genetics, organic chemistry, and archeology, it will hopefully now be possible to find out what the truth really is.

“The oldest pottery shards shown to contain milk were found in southeastern Europe, more precisely in what today is northeastern Greece. We believe that the mutation once grew common there and then became fundamental to the development of agrarian culture,” says Anders Götherstam, who will be coordinating the project.

The researchers will follow the tracks of milk throughout Europe, making use of a model for the spread of genes in order to follow the dissemination of the mutation. In this model the frequency of the mutation increases along the ‘frontline’ of the dissemination¬-that is, we in Scandinavia, on the periphery, should thus have the highest frequency of the specific gene.

“Mutations can be selected negatively or positively throughout evolution and history. But no other mutation seems to have had so positive a selection in the last ten thousand years as the one that creates lactose tolerance.”

The project, which is starting this week and involves 13 universities in Europe, is receiving €3.3 million for four years, which will also fund educational efforts. The other research teams come from Stockholm, the UK, Ireland, The Netherlands, Germany, France, and Denmark. A kick-off conference will take place in York on September 13–15.

“This funding will tie these research teams tightly together, which will result in lots of new research and new interpretations,” says Anders Götherstam.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Uppsala Universitet. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Uppsala Universitet. "Significance Of Milk In Development Of Culture To Be Studied." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 September 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080904112701.htm>.
Uppsala Universitet. (2008, September 4). Significance Of Milk In Development Of Culture To Be Studied. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080904112701.htm
Uppsala Universitet. "Significance Of Milk In Development Of Culture To Be Studied." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080904112701.htm (accessed September 19, 2014).

Share This



More Fossils & Ruins News

Friday, September 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Iconic 'Easy Rider' Chopper Bike to Go on Auction Block

Iconic 'Easy Rider' Chopper Bike to Go on Auction Block

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) — The iconic Harley-Davidson motorbike ridden by Peter Fonda in the 1969 classic "Easy Rider" is to go under the hammer in California, and auctioneers predict it will make at least $1 million. Duration: 01:09 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) — Considered a "national heritage" in Belgium, chocolate now has a new museum in Brussels. In a former chocolate factory, visitors to the permanent exhibition spaces, workshops and tastings can discover derivatives of the cocoa bean. Duration: 01:00 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Egypt Denies Claims Oldest Pyramid Damaged in Restoration

Egypt Denies Claims Oldest Pyramid Damaged in Restoration

AFP (Sep. 17, 2014) — Egypt's antiquities minister denied Tuesday claims that the Djoser pyramid, the country's first, had been damaged during restoration work by a company accused of being unqualified to do such work. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
King Richard III's Painful Cause Of Death Revealed

King Richard III's Painful Cause Of Death Revealed

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) — King Richard III died in the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, and now researchers examining his skull think they know how. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins