Paloma Diaz-Maroto

Archaeology and paleogenetics have been my favorite topics since I started my bachelor´s in Biology in 2005.  Later on, I decided to enroll for a Master in Archaeology and Human Evolution at the URV (Tarragona, Spain). During two years, I had the opportunity to participate in several archaeological excavations where I learnt the importance of the methodology during fieldwork and the procedures to preserve fossil remains after excavation.

For me, it is fundamental the incorporation of an interdisciplinary point of view in my professional career, for that reason, I decided to start my PhD in ancient DNA at Tarapacá University in Chile in collaboration with the Center for Geogenetics (University of Copenhagen). During the last four years, I could apply my knowledge in genomics to the understanding of the human past populations. My PhD project consisted of the study of the domestication of South American camelids, employing ancient DNA and Next Generation Sequencing. This data was used to explore phylogenetic and evolutionary questions on these species, and merging genetics and archaeological research together.

Now, as a PostDoc in Timber project, I have a great opportunity for further developing as a researcher and exploring new topics. Having the chance of carrying out this kind of project at the Humanities Faculty shows the importance of ancient DNA studies and the integration of new data to solve archaeological questions from the past.