The analysis of archaeological textiles is a challenging undertaking. These precious remains have been altered to the point that discerning their composition requires the development of high specialised analytical tools, characterized by high sensitivity and great versatility. In different sites, many textiles have been excavated, some well-preserved, some with signs of carbonisation; in some cases, traces of colour are still visible. PARCA project proposes to join forces between dye analysis and proteomics to develop an innovative streamlined protocol that would combine dye and protein analysis in a single extraction to minimise sampling size while maximising the amount of information obtained. It will be achieved through the most up-to-date methodologies and instrumental developments of Liquid Chromatography-Orbitrap-Mass Spectrometry to develop protocols that will be applicable to the most degraded archaeological textiles. The LC-MS data will be correlated with FTIR and SEM analyses, to determine the threshold of protein survival by non-destructive techniques prior to proteomics. The project will be carried out for the first 2 years at the Smithsonian Institution (Washington DC-USA), in the proteomics lab under the supervision of Dr. Caroline Solazzo. The third year, incoming phase, will be carried at Sapienza University of Rome, under the supervision of Prof. Roberta Curini. At the end, archaeological relics from the Mediterranean basin will be analysed, in particular samples from Pompeii and Vesuvian areas and from Greek areas. The success of this project will result in gaining new experience in the analytical characterization of ancient textiles, by enriching my background on dyes with the acquisition of a very high level of skills in the field of proteomics and in high resolution mass spectrometry. This knowledge will allow me to reach a leading profile as independent researcher and to strongly strengthen my position in the field of Cultural Heritage Science.
Fields of science
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