There’s been a lot of cool news in natural science lately, so today I thought I’d provide some synopses and links. Enjoy!
Ancient Life Could Return to Arctic by 2010:
- Global warming means that the ancient forests of northern Canada could return as early as 2100.
- Fossilized forests of willow, pine, spruce, oak, and hickory, which grew in Nunavut’s Bylot Island between 2.6 and 3 million years ago, may find conditions warm enough to begin growth several decades from now.
- Of course, it takes hundreds of years for a forest to develop.
- Link to ScienceDaily article: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120921082807.htm
Khoe-San Peoples Diverged Before ‘Out-of-Africa’ Migration of Modern Humans:
Genetic Mutation May Have Spurred Human Migration
- And speaking of early human migration, new Wake Forest Baptist Medical Research Center has found that a genetic mutation that occurred 85,000 years ago may have allowed more immigration for modern humans.
- The mutation allowed humans to convert plant-based polyunsaturated fats (PUFA) to PUFAs for the brain, which increase brain size and develop its complexity.
- Although modern humans developed 180,000 years ago, they mostly stayed in Africa until about 100,000 years ago.
- Link to ScienceDaily article: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120919190100.htm