Since its establishment in 1992, the skeletal collection ADBOU at the University of Southern Denmark in Odense has specialized in curating and studying skeletons excavated from cemeteries dated to Viking age, Medieval and Early Modern times.
The skeletal collection stores more than 16,000 skeletons. The number of skeletons in the collection increases continuously, when museums excavate and bring in skeletons for storing. The skeletons are primarily from the Danish areas of Jutland and Funen.
ADBOU was established when two separate skeletal collections were merged – one from Funen and one from Jutland. The name ADBOU is an abbreviation of Anthropological DataBase Odense University, but the collection has retained its name despite the fact that the university has changed its name to the University of Southern Denmark. The term DataBase refers to the skeletons representing a valuable research base, providing data for both Danish and international research projects.
The main focus of the research group at ADBOU, is population based studies aimed at developing methods within the fields of paleoepidemiology and paleodemography, and studying the presence of chronic infectious diseases in the past and demographic profiles of past populations.