We've updated our Privacy Policy to make it clearer how we use your personal data.

We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. You can read our Cookie Policy here.

Advertisement
World’s Oldest Cheese Found in Egyptian Tomb
News

World’s Oldest Cheese Found in Egyptian Tomb

World’s Oldest Cheese Found in Egyptian Tomb
News

World’s Oldest Cheese Found in Egyptian Tomb

Credit: Pixabay.
Read time:
 

Want a FREE PDF version of This News Story?

Complete the form below and we will email you a PDF version of "World’s Oldest Cheese Found in Egyptian Tomb"

First Name*
Last Name*
Email Address*
Country*
Company Type*
Job Function*
Would you like to receive further email communication from Technology Networks?

Technology Networks Ltd. needs the contact information you provide to us to contact you about our products and services. You may unsubscribe from these communications at any time. For information on how to unsubscribe, as well as our privacy practices and commitment to protecting your privacy, check out our Privacy Policy

Aging usually improves the flavor of cheese, but that’s not why some very old cheese discovered in an Egyptian tomb is drawing attention. Instead, it’s thought to be the most ancient solid cheese ever found, according to a study published in ACS’ journal Analytical Chemistry.

The tomb of Ptahmes, mayor of Memphis in Egypt during the 13th century BC, was initially unearthed in 1885. After being lost under drifting sands, it was rediscovered in 2010, and archeologists found broken jars at the site a few years later. One jar contained a solidified whitish mass, as well as canvas fabric that might have covered the jar or been used to preserve its contents. Enrico Greco and colleagues wanted to analyze the whitish substance to determine its identity.

After dissolving the sample, the researchers purified its protein constituents and analyzed them with liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry. The peptides detected by these techniques show the sample was a dairy product made from cow milk and sheep or goat milk. The characteristics of the canvas fabric, which indicate it was suitable for containing a solid rather than a liquid, and the absence of other specific markers, support the conclusion that the dairy product was a solid cheese. Other peptides in the food sample suggest it was contaminated with Brucella melitensis, a bacterium that causes brucellosis. This potentially deadly disease spreads from animals to people, typically from eating unpasteurized dairy products. If the team’s preliminary analysis is confirmed, the sample would represent the earliest reported biomolecular evidence of the disease.

This article has been republished from materials provided by the American Chemical Society. Note: material may have been edited for length and content. For further information, please contact the cited source.

Reference
Proteomic Analyses on an Ancient Egyptian Cheese and Biomolecular Evidence of Brucellosis.Enrico Greco, Ola El-Aguizy, Mona Fouad Ali, Salvatore Foti, Vincenzo Cunsolo, Rosaria Saletti, and Enrico Ciliberto. Anal. Chem., DOI: 10.1021/acs.analchem.8b02535.

Advertisement