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This section contains regularly updated highlights of the news from around The Johns Hopkins University. Links to the complete news reports from the nine schools, the Applied Physics Laboratory and other centers and institutes are to the left, as are links to help news media contact the Johns Hopkins communications offices.

 

Oceans 2013: Johns Hopkins Scientist Says Circulation Changes Due to Ozone Thinning

According to a Johns Hopkins earth scientist, the hole in the Antarctic ozone layer has caused changes in the way that waters in those southern oceans mix – a situation that has the potential to alter the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere and eventually could have an impact on global climate change. In a paper published in today’s issue of the journal Science, Darryn W. Waugh and his team show that subtropical intermediate waters in the southern oceans have become “younger” as the upwelling, circumpolar waters have gotten “older” – changes that are consistent with the fact that surface winds have strengthened as the ozone layer has thinned.

Royal Society Research Professor to Give Annual Benton Lecture at Johns Hopkins

October 17, 2012 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE MEDIA CONTACT:  Lisa De Nike (443)-287-9960 (office) (443) 845-3148 (cell) Lde@jhu.edu Andrew Watson, a Royal Society research professor who studies the carbon cycle and its connection climate change, will give the George S. Benton Endowed Lecture in Meteorology and Fluid Dynamics at The Johns Hopkins University at 4 p.m. [...]

Media Advisory: JHU Oceanographer available to discuss shrinking Arctic sea ice

The National Snow and Ice Data Center at the University of Colorado has reported that there is less ice in the Arctic Ocean this summer than at any time since satellite measurements were first taken back in 1979, a finding that underscores the reality of global climate change. Johns Hopkins oceanographer Thomas Haine, who studies how the physics of ocean currents affects global climate, is available to put these findings into perspective.

They Were What They Ate: Study Reveals Pre-Human Relatives Ate Only Forest Foods

You are what you eat, and that seems to have been as true two million years ago, when our pre-human relatives were swinging through the trees and racing across the savannas of South Africa, as it is today. A study done by a team that included Johns Hopkins University geochemist Benjamin Passey and published in today’s issue of the journal Nature reveals that Australopithecus sediba, an ape-like creature with human features living in a region about 50 miles northwest of today’s Johannesburg, exclusively consumed fruits, leaves and other forest-based foods, even though its habitat was near grassy savanna with its rich variety of savory sedges, tasty tubers and even juicy animals.

Newly Discovered Foot Points to a New Kid on the Hominin Block

It seems that “Lucy” was not the only hominin on the block in northern Africa about 3 million years ago. A team of researchers that included Johns Hopkins University geologist Naomi Levin has announced the discovery of a partial foot skeleton with characteristics (such as an opposable big toe bone) that don’t match those of Lucy, the human ancestor (or hominin) known to inhabit that region and considered by many to be the ancestor of all modern humans.

New Dinosaur Species Named for Johns Hopkins Postdoc

A new species of dinosaur discovered near Green River, Utah, has been named for a Johns Hopkins University postdoctoral student and her twin sister whose geology work while they were graduate students at Temple University helped define the new species. Named Geminiraptor suarezarum for Marina Suarez, the Blaustein Postdoctoral Scholar in Johns Hopkins’ Morton K. Blaustein Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, and her twin, Celina Suarez, now a postdoctoral student at Boise State University, the six- to seven-foot-long raptor-like dinosaur with large eyes and dexterous claws is thought to have lived about 125 million years ago, according to Utah’s Bureau of Land Management.

Crocodile and Hippopotamus Served as “Brain Food” for Early Human Ancestors

Your mother was right: Fish really is “brain food.” And it seems that even pre-humans living as far back as 2 million years ago somehow knew it. A team of researchers that included Johns Hopkins University geologist Naomi Levin has found that early hominids living in what is now northern Kenya ate a wider variety of foods than previously thought, including fish and aquatic animals such as turtles and crocodiles. Rich in protein and nutrients, these foods may have played a key role in the development of a larger, more human-like brain in our early forebears, which some anthropologists believe happened around 2 million years ago, according to the researchers’ study.

Some Like It Hot: Site of Human Evolution Was Scorching

If you think summer in your hometown is hot, consider it fortunate that you don’t live in the Turkana Basin of Kenya, where the average daily temperature has reached the mid-90s or higher, year-round, for the past 4 million years. The need to stay cool in that cradle of human evolution may relate, at least in part, to why pre-humans learned to walk upright, lost the fur that covered the bodies of their predecessors and became able to sweat more, Johns Hopkins University earth scientist Benjamin Passey said.

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