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Parasite infection at the early farming community of Çatalhöyük

  • Marissa L. Ledger (a1), Evilena Anastasiou (a1), Lisa-Marie Shillito (a2), Helen Mackay (a2), Ian D. Bull (a3), Scott D. Haddow (a4), Christopher J. Knüsel (a5) and Piers D. Mitchell (a1)...


The early village at Çatalhöyük (7100–6150 BC) provides important evidence for the Neolithic and Chalcolithic people of central Anatolia. This article reports on the use of lipid biomarker analysis to identify human coprolites from midden deposits, and microscopy to analyse these coprolites and soil samples from human burials. Whipworm (Trichuris trichiura) eggs are identified in two coprolites, but the pelvic soil samples are negative for parasites. Çatalhöyük is one of the earliest Eurasian sites to undergo palaeoparasitological analysis to date. The results inform how intestinal parasitic infection changed as humans modified their subsistence strategies from hunting and gathering to settled farming.


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