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2000-year-old Mummy deteriorating
www.chinaview.cn 2005-10-30 12:37:55

    CHANGSHA, Oct. 30 (Xinhuanet) --The well-known ancient female mummy excavated from Mawangdui Tombs in central China more than 30 years ago is sustaining decalcification, a Chinese researcher said.

    Luo Xuegang, head of the human anatomy research center with Xiangya Medical Sciences College, said the decalcification was found in the bone tissue of the female mummy of Western Han Dynasty (206 BC-24 AD) through a recent X-ray observation.

    "The decalcification might be caused by the acidic preservative fluid and the solution to the change will be to adjust pH scale toensure the preservative fluid is neutral," said Luo, who is also head of a newly-established center for research and protection of the mummy and relevant relics from Mawangdui Tombs in Changsha, capital of Hunan Province.

    Luo also mentioned obvious changes in the subcellular structureof the mummy, though its collagenous fibers and the blood vessels were well preserved.

    The Mawangdui Tombs were excavated in 1972. In addition to a well-preserved woman's corpse, more than 3,000 burial objects werefound at the site.

    The mummy, which has been kept in Hunan Provincial Museum since 1972, was said to be that of a woman named Xin Zhui, the wife of the prime minister of the Changsha Kingdom during the early Western Han Dynasty. She is thought to have died at the age of 50.Enditem

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