Ancient DNA is powerful tool to reconstruct evolutionary processes which occurred thousands of years ago. Extraction of DNA from various kind of remains coupled with the high throughput sequencing, radiocarbon dating and isotopic analyses enables investigation ancient populations and tracing its changes through the time and space. In our laboratory we use state of the art techniques to resolve wide range of intriguing questions pertaining to biology, palaeontology, anthropology and archaeology. Currently our research focuses on the two main topics.
First one is reconstruction of evolutionary histories of Late Pleistocene mammal species. We investigate population dynamics and migration patterns as a reaction on the climatic changes which took place in the past. The knowledge learnt form past populations could help to predict species’ responses to the climatic changes in the future. Currently, we explore several small mammal species throughout Eurasia such as common vole (M. arvalis), field vole (M. agrestis), narow-heded vole (M. gregalis), bank vole (Clethrionomys glareolus) and root vole (Microtus oeconomus).
The second group of projects encompasses paleogenomics of pre-Columbian populations with the main objective to broaden the knowledge about the social structure and history of the two Andean civilizations – Tiwanaku and Inka.