HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
50,000-year-old plant may warn of the death of tropical ice caps

COLUMBUS, Ohio A simple stroll after a full day of field research near a high Andean glacier in Peru led glaciologist Lonnie Thompson to discover a bed of previously hidden plants that date back at least 50,000 years.

And while that discovery is novel enough to please any scientist, it's the implication that those perfectly preserved plants may suggest that really excites him.

Thompson, a professor of geological sciences at Ohio State University and a world-class glaciologist, has made nearly annual pilgrimages to Peru's Quelccaya ice cap to monitor its slow demise, a probably victim of recent global climate change. The glacier is retreating 40 times faster now than it was when the first aerial photographs were taken in 1963.

He told this story today as part of his Emiliani Lecture presentation at the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco.

In 2002, he and his colleagues from the Byrd Polar Research Center had found a small bed of plants that had, until then, been buried by the ice cap. Carbon dating on those plants suggested that they had been buried nearly 5,000 years ago.

"We were surprised by those dates and had the plant tissue dated four times by two separate institutions," Thompson said, "but the dates remained the same."

This time, Thompson decided to look up a different valley, some 1.8 miles (3 kilometers) from the initial plant find. "But about a quarter-mile from there, I found yet another area of uncovered plants."

When Thompson returned to his campus lab, he packaged the three new samples and sent them off for carbon-dating as well. The first two yielded dates similar to the 2002 plant find -- about 5,200 years ago.

But the date for the third plant sample seemed radically skewed. "We had the samples dated at the National AMS Facility at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (NOSAMS) and later sent other samples to the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL)
'"/>

Contact: Lonnie Thompson
thompson.3@osu.edu
614-292-6652
Ohio State University
15-Dec-2004


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Circadian clock controls plant growth hormone
2. New system of wastewater treatment could reduce the size of treatment plants by half
3. First case of successful ovarian tissue transplantation between two, nonidentical sisters
4. Discovery in plant virus may help prevent HIV and similar viruses
5. US Department of Defense awards $1.6 million for implantable biochip research
6. News conference on plant diseases and issues important to California
7. Insulin grown in plants relieves diabetes in mice; UCF study holds promise for humans
8. Isoprene emission from plants -- a volatile answer to heat stress
9. Brains hearing center may reorganize after implant of cochlear device
10. Implanon, Norplant and Jadelle are all effective contraceptives -- but side effects vary
11. A new plant-bacterial symbiotic mechanism promising

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:6/14/2017)... June 15, 2017  IBM (NYSE: IBM ) is introducing ... event dedicated to developing collaboration between startups and global businesses, ... 15-17. During the event, nine startups will showcase the solutions ... various industries. France ... market, with a 30 percent increase in the number of ...
(Date:5/6/2017)... , May 5, 2017 ... just announced a new breakthrough in biometric authentication ... exploits quantum mechanical properties to perform biometric authentication. These ... smart semiconductor material created by Ram Group and ... finance, entertainment, transportation, supply chains and security. Ram ...
(Date:4/17/2017)... -- NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ: NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or ... 2016 Annual Report on Form 10-K on Thursday April 13, 2017 ... ... Investor Relations section of the Company,s website at http://www.nxt-id.com  under ... http://www.sec.gov . 2016 Year Highlights: ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/21/2017)... ... September 21, 2017 , ... When a downtown Greenville ... was swift and efficient thanks to the continuing efforts of members of the ... more than 50 stakeholders, including officials from area counties and cities, Renewable Water ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... ... September 20, 2017 , ... The ... Agronomic Services (Koch) to feature new innovations aimed at helping farmers solve the ... 2018. American Farmer airs Tuesdays at 8:30aET on RFD-TV. Check your local listings ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... ... September 20, 2017 , ... ... global provider of engineering, architecture, project controls, construction management, commissioning and qualification ... announced the unveiling of the iCON™ brand which represents the collective facility ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... ... September 20, 2017 , ... From industry leaders, sports stars, ... standard medicine failed. Many of these people had lost all hope. Their ... Free Download (pdf) , “Neil takes readers on a riveting journey ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: