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  • 1
    ISSN: 1824-310X
    Keywords: Hair-trace elements ; Paleonutrition
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Abstract In the present study we have analysed hair Zn, Cu, Fe, Mn, Sr, Pb and Ca contents of 8 prehispanic hair specimens from Gran Canaria, comparing them with 10 acutal samples, which serve as a «control» group. Prehispanic samples showed statistically significant less Zn (t=2.81, p〈0.02) and Cu (t=5.07, p〈0.001) than the controls. On the other hand, Sr was higher in the prehispanic samples (t=4.42, p〈0.001), as Fe (t=3.92, p〈0.005), Pb (t=3.14, p〈0.01) and especially Mn did (p〈0.0001). No differences were observed regarding hair calcium content. These data are in accordance with results obtained in bone samples of the prehispanic inhabitants of this island, supporting the point of view that they consumed a mainly vegetarian diet, a statement which is in accordance with other archaeological and etnohistorical data.
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1824-310X
    Keywords: Paleontutrition ; Bone histology ; Trace elements ; Sr ; Mg ; Mn ; Zn ; Cu ; Fe ; Co ; Prehispanic Canarians ; Osteoporosis
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Abstract The trabecular bone mass (TBM) of 29 bone cylinders (obtained at the iliac crest with a Bordier's trephine) belonging to non-sanile adult skeletons of the prehispanic inhabitants of the Western Canary Islands was determined histomorphometrically. Scanbning electron microscope and/or binocular microscope observations of the cylinders were also performed in order to exclude diagenetic alterations of the bones. Bone content of Sr, Mg, Mn, Co, Cu, Fe and Zn of the skeletons and of soil samples from the burials where they were found were also measured. These procedures were also performed in a control group of 21 preciously healthy individuals dead as a result of trauma. Although mean TBM values of the prehispanic samples not different from those of the control group, some individual TBM values of skeletons from La Palma and El Hierro were fully in the osteoporotic range. Individuals from La Palma and El Hierro showed high mean Sr, Mg and Mn bone contents, whereas Zn and Fe contents were below the normal range, indicating a mainly vegetarian diet. Individuals from Tenerife showed nearly normal Sr and Mg bone contents, low Zn and higher Fe values than those from the other islands; these results indicate a more mixed diet. No relationship was found between TBM and bone trace element contents.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1824-3096
    Keywords: Ethanol consumption Harris lines
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Abstract Harris lines represent episodes of growth arrest followed by recovery, thus reflecting episodes of mismatched imbalance between energy intake and energy expenditure. Consumption of ethanol during the growth period — formerly extended in our wine-producing rural areas- may lead to such a situation, due at least in part to the energy-wasteful MEOS-linked ethanol metabolism. Based on these facts, in the present study we have analysed the relationship between ethanol intake during growth period and the presence of Harris lines in the right tibia in 100 consecutive adult patients admitted to our hospitalization unit. Early ethanol consumption was strongly related with the presence of two or more, and three or more Harris lines, so that ethanol consumption should be considered in the differential diagnosis of Harris lines, and conversely, the presence of Harris lines point to ethanol consumption during growth period. This association was independent from coexisting starvation and/or illness.
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1824-310X
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Abstract Harris lines were assessed in 194 right tibiae of prehispanic inhabitants of Gran Canaria, belonging to 52 adult females and 123 adult males. No Harris lines were detected in 45 (23%) of the adult individuals (13 females (25%) and 26 males (21%), these differences being not statistically significant. Female tibiae showed a slightly lower mean number of Harris lines at the distal end than male ones (1,692±1.681 in females vs 1.91±1.825 in males). Ages at which Harris lines were formed showed two peaks, a major one at the age of 1 year, and another between 15 and 16 years in males and between 11–12 and 14–15 years in females. Harris lines were more frequently observed at the distal than at the proximal end of the bone. The relative low number of lines detected in our population when compared with the high prevalence of osteoporosis among the adult population of this island is striking.
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