CT-Scans performed on Iranian ‘Saltmummies’

TEHRAN, Dec. 22 (MNA) – Researchers at Tehran University of Medical Sciences performed a CT scanning of Iranian auto mummies dubbed ‘Saltman’ on Mon. to discover new findings and learn more about various aspects of life of ancient Persians.

The CT scans on Saltman 1 and 5 were performed at a scientific center of Tehran University of Medical Sciences following the signing of an MoU between the National Museum of Iran and the University of Bochum in Germany. Dr. Frank Ruhli, Director of Institute of Evolutionary Medicine (IEM) at the University of Zurich, Dr. Shirani in charge of the CT angiography room in Tehran Heart Center, and Dr. Gholamreza Molavi, assistant professor at Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Health, were present during the CT scanning.

At the end of the scanning, Dr. Molavi noted that the saltmen had been discovered several years ago in the Chehrabad salt mines, located in Zanjan, adding “following the discoveries made, the Chehrabad Saltmummy & Saltmine Exploration Project was defined as a joint research project between Zanjan Department of Cultural Heritage, Chehrabad archeological site, European universities of Bochum, Zurich, York, Oxford and Besançon as well as Tehran University of Medical Sciences as the only Iranian university participating in the project.”

According to Molavi, the project is still in its preliminary stages.

Dr. Shirani of the CT angiography room said the ‘saltmen’ have been mummified under natural circumstances, namely appropriate temperate, low humidity and a lot of amount of salt, therefore, further studies required noninvasive methods such as CT scanning.

According to Shirani, the saltmen were scanned by Dual Source CT scanner under sterile conditions, without the smallest damage or problems.

The Saltmen were discovered in the Chehrabad salt mines, located on the southern part of the Hamzehlu village, on the west side of Zanjan. By 2010 the remains of six men had been discovered, most of them accidentally killed by the collapse of galleries they were working in some 2000 years ago.

Three bodies are dated to the Parthian (247 BCE–224 CE) and Sassanid (224–651 CE) eras, and the remainder to the Achaemenid Dynasty (550–330 BCE).

The head and left foot of Salt Man 1 are on display at the National Museum of Iran in Tehran.

 

MS/IRN81889572

 

News Code 113052

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