Where and when did the Black Death originate? The question has been asked for centuries and led to heated debate among historians.
Now, a group of researchers reports that it has found the answer in the pulp of teeth from people buried in the 14th century.
Based on their analysis of the preserved genetic material, the researchers report that the Black Death arrived in 1338 or 1339 near Issyk-Kul, a lake in a mountainous area just west of China in what is now Kyrgyzstan. The plague first infected people in a small, nearby settlement of traders eight years before it devastated Eurasia, killing 60 percent of its victims.