The birth, life and death of the one of the most well-known historical Kings in the history of ancient Egypt- Tutankhamen– has had his DNA tested using his ancient, 3,300-year-old remains. Historical accounts have always claimed that the king’s mother was Nefertiti but DNA testing has proved otherwise.

This particular dynasty was riddled with incestuous relationships and DNA testing brought to the light an interesting piece of the king’s family tree.   Tutankhamen’s father, King Akhenaton, had married one of his sister’s who was thus, Tut’s mother. Scientists have helped create a much clearer picture and traced the hereditary conditions the king suffered because of all the incestuous marriages that took place in those times.

Tut’s tomb was discovered in 1924. In his tomb, the quantity and magnificence of the gold artifacts within the tomb immediately brought much attention and speculation. The boy was just 19 when he died and he became king at the age of 10. His mummy showed a hole at the back of the head as well as a leg fracture. The hole in the head brought around suspicions and theories that the king as assassinated. However, testing showed that the king had suffered from a severe bought of malaria and this would have aggravated the broken leg he suffered from. The Malaria also caused the king’s death and the theories centering on the boy being murdered could be safely discarded. The hole at the back of the boy’s head was in fact due to the process of mummification.

The number of likely genetic diseases he inherited including a club foot was also due to the incestuous marriage of his parents which would have caused genetic mutations. He also inherited Kohler’s disease, which his grandfather was also afflicted with; this condition would have inhibited the blood supply to bones in the calf and foot.

DNA testing shed more light on the theory and digital reconstructions which claimed and showed the boy as having extremely feminine features. This theory was simply based on statues and the style of the period which often portrayed male royalty as slightly feminine.

The DNA test has again solved many dilemmas on such ancient historical figures as King Tut. Scientists have carried out tests using remains that have deteriorated over thousands of years. However, these tests have nevertheless proves successful because DNA is very stable if the conditions it is in are not extreme.

Other articles

Dominique Strauss Kahn; the defense has requested the results of DNA tests. The managing director of IMF (International Monetary Fund), Dominique Strauss Kahn, is facing trial after being accused of the alleged rape of a waitress in a hotel in New York. Several DNA tests were carried out on the scratches and other marks found on the victim and Strauss Kahn.