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Title:An integrative, community-collaborative approach to investigating health, diet, and the oral microbiome in ancestral and descendant coast Tsimshian communities
Author(s):Bader, Alyssa Christine
Director of Research:Malhi, Ripan S
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Malhi, Ripan S
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Amato, Katherine; Ambrose, Stanley; Brinkworth, Jessica
Department / Program:Anthropology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Ancient DNA, microbiome, Tsimshian, paleodiet
Abstract:This project employs a novel, integrative approach to investigating the relationship between periods of sociocultural transition, diet, and the oral microbiome in the ancestral and descendant Coast Tsimshian communities of British Columbia, Canada. Over the past 6,000 years, the Coast Tsimshian have experienced two significant periods of social transition: increasing social complexity during the transition from the Middle Pacific period (3500-1500BP) to the Late Pacific period (1500-500BP) and 19th century European contact, with subsequent ongoing colonization and increasing industrialization. Archaeological evidence from burials and household structures at winter villages along the coastline of Prince Rupert Harbour indicate that as warfare and the accumulation of personal wealth increased, the social complexity of the ancestral community increased and individual status differentiation emerged. The communities were organized around large, stratified, lineage-based, multigenerational households, which likely controlled access to local food resources. This project integrates genomic, isotopic, and osteological data with community-held knowledge from the descendant Metlakatla First Nation to identify inter-individual variation in the diet and health of the ancestral Coast Tsimshian population related to status differentiation during this period of increasing social complexity. Using ancient bacterial DNA extracted from the dental calculus of the ancestral community, this project also characterizes the composition of the oral microbiome of this community, and examines variation in oral microbial diversity correlated with inter-individual variation in diet and oral health. Finally, analogous methods of data collection are used to examine diet, health, and the composition of the oral microbiome in the descendant community in comparison with the ancestral community. This paired Ancestor-descendant comparative research framework facilitates an investigation of how the Coast Tsimshian oral microbiome has adapted to a marine-based subsistence lifestyle, and to what extent the ancestral microbiome has been retained by the descendant community, as they experience increasing industrialization within their traditional homeland.
Issue Date:2019-07-03
Rights Information:Copyright 2019 Alyssa Bader
Date Available in IDEALS:2019-11-26
Date Deposited:2019-08

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