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April 17, 1981

Genetics of the Eighteenth Dynasty

Author Affiliations

University of North Carolina Chapel Hill

JAMA. 1981;245(15):1525. doi:10.1001/jama.1981.03310400011005

To the Editor.—  The article "Tutankhamun and His Brothers: Familial Gynecomastia in the Eighteenth Dynasty" (1980;244:160) presents an interesting summary of the difficulty of reconstructing the pedigree of this family and interpreting the appearance of archeological artifacts in pathological and genetic terms. However, three important points should be added.First, the author, Bernadine Z. Paulshock, MD, is perhaps too sanguine in her belief that "once Queen Tiye's mummy is ABO/MN typed, the theory that either she or Sitamun was the mother of Smenkhare and Tutankhamun should be either corroborated or abandoned." Among the mummies originally typed were Yuya and Thuya, the parents of the Queen.1 Both were A2N, so their daughter must be either A2N or ON. If the mummy is otherwise, either it is not Tiye—an internal contradiction, since one basis of her identification was extreme cephalometric similarity to the mummies of Yuya and