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Vitamin D status in post-medieval Northern England: Insights from dental histology and enamel peptide analysis at Coach Lane, North Shields (AD 1711–1857)

Snoddy, Anne Marie E.; Shaw, Heidi; Newman, Sophie; Miszkiewicz, Justyna J.; Stewart, Nicolas A.; Jakob, Tina; Buckley, Hallie; Caffell, Anwen; Gowland, Rebecca

Vitamin D status in post-medieval Northern England: Insights from dental histology and enamel peptide analysis at Coach Lane, North Shields (AD 1711–1857) Thumbnail


Authors

Anne Marie E. Snoddy

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Heidi Shaw heidi.a.shaw@durham.ac.uk
PGR Student Doctor of Philosophy

Sophie Newman

Justyna J. Miszkiewicz

Nicolas A. Stewart

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Dr Tina Jakob betina.jakob@durham.ac.uk
Technician in Archaeological Science

Hallie Buckley



Abstract

Objectives: The post-medieval period in Europe saw a dramatic increase in metabolic bone disease related to vitamin D deficiency (VDD). Recent paleopathological work has utilized interglobular dentin (IGD) as a proxy for poor vitamin D status during development, while enamel peptide analysis allows the identification of chromosomal sex in non-adult remains. Here we explore the relationship between sex, the presence of IGD, and macroscopic markers of VDD in an industrial era assemblage from Northeast England. Materials and methods: 25 individuals (9 females, 9 males, 9 unknown sex) from the cemetery site at Coach Lane, North Shields (1711–1857) were selected for paleopathological analysis, histological assessment of IGD, and enamel peptide determination of chromosomal sex. Results: Ground tooth sections from 21 individuals were of suitable quality for detection of IGD, and enamel peptide analysis confirmed the chromosomal sex of ten individuals. Sixteen individuals (76.1%) exhibited ≥1 episode of IGD. Nine of these (42.8%) exhibited >1 episode and four (19%) exhibited ≥4 episodes in regular intervals. Male sex was significantly associated with the presence of IGD (p = 0.0351; 100% males vs. 54.5% females). Females were more likely to exhibit macroscopic evidence of VDD (45.5% females vs 30% males) but this was not statistically significant. Discussion and conclusions: Periods of poor mineral metabolism during childhood appear much more prevalent at Coach Lane than macroscopic evidence suggests. Evidence of seasonal IGD episodes indicates that northern latitude played a major role in poor VD status in the Northeast of England. The significant association of IGD with male sex may be due to sex-related differences in dentinal mineralization or a higher risk of poor VD status in males aged <5 years. More work is needed to establish an evidence-based threshold for pathological levels of IGD before the presence of this feature can confidently be used as a biomarker for poor VD status.

Citation

Snoddy, A. M. E., Shaw, H., Newman, S., Miszkiewicz, J. J., Stewart, N. A., Jakob, T., …Gowland, R. (2024). Vitamin D status in post-medieval Northern England: Insights from dental histology and enamel peptide analysis at Coach Lane, North Shields (AD 1711–1857). PLoS ONE, 19(1), Article e0296203. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0296203

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Dec 7, 2023
Online Publication Date Jan 31, 2024
Publication Date Jan 31, 2024
Deposit Date Feb 8, 2024
Publicly Available Date Feb 8, 2024
Journal PLOS ONE
Publisher Public Library of Science
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 19
Issue 1
Article Number e0296203
DOI https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0296203
Public URL https://durham-repository.worktribe.com/output/2192739

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