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:
TAG: year old plant may warn the death tropical ice caps

(Date:10/31/2014)... In the war against Ebola one important hurdle has ... Researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel ... of mice that can be infected with Ebola and ... work, published in the current issue of Science ... and vaccines, which are desperately needed to curb the ...
(Date:10/31/2014)...  HITLAB SM , a healthcare innovation and ... HITLAB Innovators Summit SM on December 1, ... partner with the Clinton Foundation,s Health Matters Initiative, ... Business School Alumni Club of New ... Operations Research, bringing together leaders in healthcare and ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... in German . ... fellow humans to behave socially? This is one of ... theory. Previous studies assumed that it is almost impossible ... the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology have now ... on the cooperative behaviour of others. However, the possibilities ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Improved mouse model will accelerate research on potential Ebola vaccines, treatments 2HITLAB Announces Inaugural HITLAB Innovators Summit 2HITLAB Announces Inaugural HITLAB Innovators Summit 3Together we are strong -- or insufferable 2Together we are strong -- or insufferable 3Together we are strong -- or insufferable 4
(Date:10/30/2014)... Chicago, Illinois (PRWEB) October 30, 2014 ... Regenerative and Cellular Medicine Showcase in Chicago, leading ... and Orthopedic Surgeon, Dr. Wade McKenna presented talks ... Effectiveness and Orthopedic Surgical Applications For Stem Cells. ... of amniotic membrane and the properties of AlphaGEMS ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... 30, 2014 Whitehouse Laboratories has formally ... Stability Testing and Package Test Capacity. Responding to growing ... a dramatic increase in environmental chamber storage space that ... and aging samples to be securely held on site ... capital expenditure has already taken place with the recent ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... BASKING RIDGE, N.J. , Oct. 30, 2014 /PRNewswire/ ... announced that it will hold a conference call and ... 8:30 a.m. EST to discuss its third quarter 2014 ... access the conference call by dialing (888) 347-1165 for ... conference call will be webcast live under the investor ...
(Date:10/27/2014)... 27, 2014 The Italian ... exhibit and sell its artificial "lower limb", after ... patent.      (Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20141027/713097 ... fighting, the definitive judgement has arrived: Roadrunnerfoot, the ... and accessible hi-tech prostheses with composite materials, has ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Riordan-McKenna Institute Founders, Neil Riordan, PhD and Orthopedic Surgeon, Dr. Wade McKenna Present at the Mid American Regenerative and Cellular Medicine Showcase 2Riordan-McKenna Institute Founders, Neil Riordan, PhD and Orthopedic Surgeon, Dr. Wade McKenna Present at the Mid American Regenerative and Cellular Medicine Showcase 3Riordan-McKenna Institute Founders, Neil Riordan, PhD and Orthopedic Surgeon, Dr. Wade McKenna Present at the Mid American Regenerative and Cellular Medicine Showcase 4Whitehouse Labs Announces Major Capital Investment in Stability and Storage Testing Capacity 2Whitehouse Labs Announces Major Capital Investment in Stability and Storage Testing Capacity 3Regado Biosciences to Provide Third Quarter 2014 Financial Results 2Italian Lower Limb Prosthesis Company Wins Lawsuit Against German Giant Ottobock 2
Cached News: