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Virgin Texas: Treponematosis-Associated Periosteal Reaction 6 Millenia in the Past

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DOI: 10.4236/aa.2011.12003    5,059 Downloads   9,726 Views   Citations


In bioarchaeology, skeletal biology and paleopathology, periosteal reaction has been variably considered as a non-specific sign of trauma and alternatively as having potentially diagnostic implications. Examination of sixth millennium before present Texas cemeteries falsifies the non-specific trauma hypothesis, while examination of a second millennium before present site reveals a new (at least to Texas) population phenomenon. In contrast to isolated bumps and osteomyelitis, the study of periosteal reaction in early Texas is the study of “virgins,” individuals spared the phenomenon that cause such bone alteration. It is only in the second millennium before present that periosteal reaction becomes widespread, both in population penetrance and in extent of skeleton affected. That pattern has previously been documented for the treponematosis yaws, similar to what has been found in other areas of Archaic North America.

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The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

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Rothschild, B. , Rothschild, C. & Doran, G. (2011). Virgin Texas: Treponematosis-Associated Periosteal Reaction 6 Millenia in the Past. Advances in Anthropology, 1, 15-18. doi: 10.4236/aa.2011.12003.


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