Hepatitis B is really, really old

Hepatitis B virus.
(Image credit: iStock)

Respect your elders, they say, for they have decades of wisdom to offer. But researchers recently discovered that the maxim extends to ancient diseases, too.

Scientists have discovered a previously unknown strain of hepatitis B in millennia-old human remains, The Washington Post reported. In a study published in the journal Nature on Wednesday, geneticists were able to isolate the virus in the remains of 25 ancient humans, dating back between 200 and 7,000 years.

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Shivani is the editorial assistant at TheWeek.com and has previously written for StreetEasy and Mic.com. A graduate of the physics and journalism departments at NYU, Shivani currently lives in Brooklyn and spends free time cooking, watching TV, and taking too many selfies.