Glacial-Postglacial Temperature Difference Deduced from Aspartic Acid Racemization in Fossil Bones

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Science  02 Nov 1973:
Vol. 182, Issue 4111, pp. 479-482
DOI: 10.1126/science.182.4111.479


The magnitude of the temperature increase that occurred in continental regions following the termination of the last glaciation has been determined from the degree of racemization of aspartic acid in fossil bones of known age. The results indicate an increase of 4°C for the Mediterranean coast and 5° to 6°C for East Africa. These estimates are believed to be reliable within 1°C.