More than 5,000 years old: remains of the first bubonic plague victim were found

In Latvia found the remains of a man who died more than five thousand years ago from the bubonic plague.

According to scientists, this appears to be the first victim of the disease.

“This is the oldest identified plague victim we have to date,” said Dr. Ben Krause-Kjora of Kiel University in Germany.

The researchers said the remains were found with three other burials in Latvia on the banks of the Salaca River, which flows into the Baltic Sea.

Scientists sequenced DNA from human bones and teeth and found that one hunter-gatherer of about 20 years was infected with an ancient strain of plague caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis. He was allegedly bitten by a rodent and then died a couple of days later of septic shock.

Experts believe the ancient strain originated about 7,000 years ago. The bacterium could have been transmitted from animals to humans.