Proteomics and ZooMS

Sarah holding up parchment

Contact: 
Josie Thomas
BioArCh Administrator

Address:
BioArCh, Environment Building
Wentworth Way, York
YO10 5NG, UK

Ancient proteomics involves the extraction and analysis of proteins from archaeological remains to contribute to our understanding of the past. Applications of ancient protein analysis are diverse, including the study of past foods and diets, disease process and studies of protein diagenesis and modification. The range of samples and substrates that can be analysed is similarly broad, including human and animal bone, dentine and enamel, eggshell, dental calculus, preserved food remains, ceramic residues, artworks, parchments and textiles.

Zooarchaeology by Mass Spectrometry (ZooMS) is a rapid, low-cost analytical technique which uses collagen or other proteins preserved in archaeological and historic artefacts and cultural heritage to identify the species from which they derive. Typically, this analysis is applied to fragmented, morphologically undiagnostic bone fragments, but is also applied to a range of other archaeological and material culture, including parchments, ivory, eggshell, comb artefacts and leather objects. 

We offer ZooMS analysis for external academics and commercial groups. If you are interested in ZooMS analysis and require a quote for analysis please contact Josie Thomas in the first instance and fill in a ZooMS Request Form with information about your request. 

Research Highlights

Some of BioArCh’s past proteomics and ZooMS research includes: 

Facilities, Equipment and Instrumentation 

  • A dedicated laboratory clean-room for ancient protein extractions
  • An Opentrons pipetting robot for increased throughput for ZooMS analysis
  • BioArCh has strong links with the Centre of Excellence in Mass Spectrometry, through which it has access to MALDI and Orbitrap Fusion mass spectrometers, as well as a range of protein identification software, including Mascot