A group of researchers managed to extract DNA from a 4000 years old mummy and their discovery helped solve a 100 years old mystery.
The Egyptian mummy was not a full conserved corps but just a mutilated and bandaged head. According to Live Science, the head was found above a tomb dug in 1915.
According to researchers, the tomb belonged to Governor Djehutynakht from the Middle Egypt Kingdom. But, when it was discovered, the tomb was vandalized. The media reports that the thieves set the tomb on fire in order to cover their tracks. All that was left was the head that was placed on the tomb of Djehutynakht. For 100 years researchers argued if the remains belong to Djehutynakht or his wife.
The head suffered transformations during the mummification process, many bones being removed so that the deceased will be unable to eat and drink in the afterlife (read about it here). According to specialists, these bones could have provided details regarding the gender of the mummy.
Although previous attempts to extract DNA from this 4000 years old mummy have failed because of the age of the mummy, a group of FBI researchers decided to take a crack at it. They managed to extract 105 mg of tooth dust from a molar. They managed to extract DNA from this dust and discovered that the remains belong to Djehutynakht.