Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Scientists Resurrect Ice Age Plant

From the Telegraph:
From the fruit tissues, a team of Russian scientists managed to resurrect an entire plant in a pioneering experiment that paves the way for the revival of other species.

The Silene stenophylla is the oldest plant ever to be regenerated, the researchers said, and it is fertile, producing white flowers and viable seeds.

* * *
The Russians research team recovered the fruit after investigating dozens of fossil burrows hidden in ice deposits on the right bank of the lower Kolyma River in northeastern Siberia, the sediments dating back 30,000-32,000 years.

The sediments were firmly cemented together and often totally filled with ice, making any water infiltration impossible – creating a natural freezing chamber fully isolated from the surface.
The story also discusses efforts to resurrect other Ice Age species. A herd of mammoths would be a site to see.

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