Samantha Brown

Research Associate
Department of Archaeology

Main Focus

Samantha is a PhD student for the FINDER project at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. FINDER, which stands for Fossil Fingerprinting and Identification of New Denisovan Remains from Pleistocene Asia, aims to identify hominin remains among fragmented bones from key archaeological sites. The project will have a particular focus on the discovery of Denisovan remains, known only from the remains of three teeth and one tiny bone. The identification of these remains will be completed through a combination of techniques including ZooMS collagen fingerprinting, radiocarbon dating, stable isotope analysis, and ancient DNA.

Curriculum Vitae

Samantha received her BA in Archaeology from the University of Melbourne and her MSc in Archaeological Sciences from the University of Oxford. Her MSc research focused on the use of ZooMS collagen fingerprinting to identify hominin fragments from Denisova Cave in the Altai Mountains.


2020. Fedorchenko, A.Y., Taylor, W.T.T., Sayfulloev, N.N., Brown, S., Rendu, W., Krivoshapkin, A.I., Douka, K., Shnaider, S.V. Early occupation of high asia: New insights from the ornaments of the Oshhona site in the Pamir mountains. Quaternary International.

2020. Taylor, W.T.T., Clark, J., Bayarsaikhan, J., Tuvshinjargal, T., Jobe, J.T., Fitzhugh, W., Kortum, R., Spengler, R.N., 3rd, Shnaider, S., Seersholm, F.V., Hart, I., Case, N., Wilkin, S., Hendy, J., Thuering, U., Miller, B., Miller, A.R.V., Picin, A., Vanwezer, N., Irmer, F., Brown, S., Abdykanova, A., Shultz, D.R., Pham, V., Bunce, M., Douka, K., Jones, E.L., Boivin, N., Early Pastoral Economies and Herding Transitions in Eastern Eurasia. Scientific Reports. 10, 1001.

2019. Douka, K., Brown, S., Higham, T., Pääbo, S., Derevianko, A., Shunkov, M. FINDER project: collagen fingerprinting (ZooMS) for the identification of new human fossils. Antiquity 93.3.

2019. Douka, K., Slon, V., Jacobs, Z., Ramsey, C.B., Shunkov, M.V., Derevianko, A.P., Mafessoni, F., Kozlikin, M.B., Li, B., Grün, R., Comeskey, D., Devièse, T., Brown, S., Viola, B., Kinsley, L., Buckley, M., Meyer, M., Roberts, R.G., Pääbo, S., Kelso, J., Higham, T. Age estimates for hominin fossils and the onset of the Upper Palaeolithic at Denisova Cave. Nature 565, 640–644.

2018. Slon, V., Mafessoni, F., Vernot, B., de Filippo, C., Grote, S., Viola, B., Hajdinjak, M., Peyrégne, S., Nagel, S., Brown, S., Douka, K., Higham, T., Kozlikin, M.B., Shunkov, M.V., Derevianko, A.P., Kelso, J., Meyer, M., Prüfer, K., Pääbo, S., The genome of the offspring of a Neanderthal mother and a Denisovan father. Nature 561, 113–116.

2016. Brown, S., Higham, T., Slon, V., Pääbo, S., Meyer, M., Douka, K., Brock, F., Comeskey, D., Procopio, N., Shunkov, M., Derevianko, A., Buckley, M. Identification of a new hominin bone from Denisova Cave, Siberia using collagen fingerprinting and mitochondrial DNA analysis. Scientific Reports. 6, 23559.

Selected Conference Papers

2019. Brown S., Larsen T., Roberts P., Kozlikin M., Shunkov M., Derevianko A., Higham T., Douka K. Investigating hominin subsistence strategies at Denisova Cave (Russia) using stable isotopes and peptide mass fingerprinting. ICAZ Archaeozoology, Genetics, Proteomics and Morphometrics (AGPM) Working Group

2019. Brown S., Larsen T., Roberts P., Kozlikin M., Shunkov M., Derevianko A., Higham T., Douka K. Investigation into the subsistence strategies of hominins from Denisova Cave (Russia) based on stable isotope data. European Society for the study of Human Evolution (ESHE).

2018. Douka K., Brown S., and Higham T. Addressing the dearth of human fossil remains from Pleistocene Asia. Union Internationale des Sciences Préhistoriques et Protohistoriques (UISPP).

2018. Brown S., Higham T., and Douka, K. The Search for Hominin Remains using ZooMS. Denisova Cave Symposium.

2018. Brown S., Higham T., Shunkov M., Derevianko A., Krivoshapkin A., Douka, K. The FINDER Project: Using high-throughput ZooMS to identify fragmented bones at Denisova Cave and Strashnaya Cave. The International Council for Archaeozoology (ICAZ).

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