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Images: DNA in Shipwrecked Jars Reveals Clues to Ancient World

Amphorae on the seafloor from an ancient shipwreck retained clues to the cargo they once carried. (Photo courtesy of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and Hellenic Ministry of Culture)

Hellenic Ministry of Culture maritime archaeologist Dimitris Kourkoumelis collects a ceramic sample from the interior of a 4th-century-BC amphora from the Greek island of Chios. (Photo by Brendan Foley, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

Only a small amount of material from ancient amphorae is needed to extract DNA. (Photo by Brendan Foley, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

Molecular biologist Maria Hansson runs a gel to detect ancient DNA in samples collected from a Greek amphora. (Photo by Brendan Foley, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)