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Oct 15, 2007 (Vol. 27, No. 18)

Rhynie Chert Learning Resource

  • Interesting
  • Not very molecular
What, you may be asking, is the Rhynie Chert? As explained by this informative University of Aberdeen site, Rhynie is a sedimentary rock formed from the accumulation of silicaceous animal remains. These include radiolaria, diatoms, and sponges. The Rhynie Chert gives a geological perspective of a time about 400 million years ago. Its importance to scientists is that it is the best preserved collection of plants from this time period and it contains “the most diverse associated fossil arthropod fauna of terrestrial and freshwater origin from rocks of comparable age anywhere in the world.” At the site, one will discover summaries of the research going on at the site (Rhyne is a location in Scotland), as well as obtain a perspective of life as it was a long time ago.
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*The opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s) and should not be construed as reflecting the viewpoints of the publisher, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., the publishing house, or employees and affiliates thereof.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

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