Bubonic plague is alive and well in some parts of the world today - it's present in America, for instance.
There are three distinct types of plague - Bubonic, septicaemic, snd pneumonic. The variety that caused the death of the people whose remains have been found by the Crossrail team was bubonic plague, which can turn into septicaemic plague if left untreated. Septicaemic plague often results in skin and tissue turning black.
Plague is cause by the Yersinia pestis bacterium, by the way. It's not a viral disease.
There's no vaccine against plague, and no sign of one being available in the forseeable future.
I always thought that at that time everyone's teeth were completely rotten.
That's a myth, although there was obviously tooth decay in the population. The incidence of tooth decay is closely linked to sugar consumption, and from the Middle ages onward an increase in tooth decay tended to be related to access to sugar cane. A big risk to teeth would have been the eroding effect of eating bread which contained microscopic particles of grit from the millstones used to make the flour.
Elizabeth, being the Queen, had access to plenty of sugar, and was known to have a very sweet tooth. The two combined to provide her with a mouthful of tooth decay - something which contributed o her regular bouts of bad temper.
I hope any plague bacilli are not lurking in these bodies, ready to escape. I heard they were studying the DNA etc so hope we are not in for another Black Death (Although it would please some who believe we are over populated..)
Studies have shown that it is unlikely that the plague bacterium can survive in soil for more than 24 days. The DNA study is being carried out in the hope that researchers can determine which specific form of the plague killed these people.
" The two combined to provide her with a mouthful of tooth decay - something which contributed o her regular bouts of bad temper."
I can back you up there FE, my mouth was loupin' with pain [toothache] ... luckily my dentist had superior skills and artifacts to nullify the pain in a matter of minutes ... I wonder when the first ancient tooth fillings were put in place?