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Killed half the population of Europe and the disappeared: genetics called the causes of Justinian's plague

NEWS PLANET 08.06.2019 at 17:48

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The international research Team studied the remains of people who died as a result of one of the most terrible diseases, which had to go through to mankind – the plague killed people for almost 200 years, according to the portal

Around mid 500 years, a terrible epidemic of Justinian's plague began to spread through the Eastern Roman Empire. There is speculation that initially the plague began to destroy the people in Egypt or Ethiopia, then on the trade route came to Constantinople, and then spread to other parts of the Byzantine Empire and some neighbouring countries. During the spread of the disease killed tens of millions of people. Half of Europe was destroyed, after which the spread of the disease stopped.

Scientists knew almost nothing about the strains of bacteria that provoked the emergence of Justinian's plague. The only information was that the cause was the bacterium Y. Pestis, but some strains then appeared and how they were connected, nothing was known. After the conducted research it was found that strains of bacteria was much more than I thought experts. Besides, there was discovered an interesting fact - over time, the strains have undergone convergent evolution. The disease evolved towards the end of the pandemic in such a dangerous version of himself.

the results of the study can be viewed in the edition of PNAS.