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By Shiro Kohshima, Yoshitaka Yoshimura, Nozomu Takeuchi (auth.), Gino Casassa, Francisco V. Sepúlveda, Rolf M. Sinclair (eds.)

The majesty of the icefields is past description. He who has been lucky to be there as soon as, continues to be certain perpetually. To a theoretical physicist engaged on black holes the icefields produce a well-known vertigo, the instinctive walk in the park of being faced with anything so basic and wonderfully severe that it needs to be of significance. The assembly whose lawsuits are contained during this quantity used to be performed onboard of a vessel that went to the icefields, and the individuals might actually set foot on them. It was once anticipated that, when you had now not been there sooner than, this is able to represent a ritual of initiation. And so it did. as a result we love to consult the assembly as an excursion simply because, even though it didn't have the problem, it had the spirit. After this foundational day trip there were others, this time either with spirit and difficulty, one from Chile and one from Argentina. for the time being of this writing, a fourth, full-fledged airborne excursion to the icefields is set to leave from Valdivia. the various humans of many countries who have been on board of the Aquiles will participate in it. we glance ahead to its effects, and to an ongoing intriguing medical event. Claudio Teitelboim Director, Centro de Estudios Cientfficos Valdivia, September 2001 v ACKNOWLEDGMENTS This quantity is the results of the hassle and generosity of many of us and institutions.

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Baryshnikov. G. • and Lister, A. ,1994. DNA from ancient mammoth bones, Nature, 370:333-334. Hammer, C. , Clausen, H. , and Johnson. • 1985, Continuous impurity analysis along the Dye 3 deep core, Geophysical Monograph, 33:90-94. Handt. , Richards. , Kilger. • Simanainen. , Georgiev. , Bauer. K.. , and Schaffner. W. 1994a, Molecular genetic analyses of the Tyrolean Ice Man, Science, 264:1775-1778. , Krings. , 1994b, Ancient DNA: methodological challenges. Experientia, 50:524-529. Hansen, A. , 2001, Statistical evidence miscoding lesions in ancient DNA templates, Molecular Biology and Evolution, 18:262-265.

12. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS We thank I. Barnes, 1. Bourgeois, B. Christensen, A. Cooper, N. Daugbj erg , D. Fisher, R. Koener, S. Mathiasen, S. Paabo, T. Quin, I. P. Steffensen, S. 1Irensen, C. Wiuf and C. M. Zdanowicz for help and discussions; and The Velux Foundation of 1981, Denm~k for financial support. 13. REFERENCES Abyzov, S. , 1993, Microorganisms in the Antarctic ice, in: Antarctic Microbiology, E. I. , Wiley-Liss, Inc. USA, pp. 265-295. Abyzov, S. , Bobin, N. , and Kudryashov, B. , 1982, Quantitative analysis of microorganisms during the microbial investigation of Antarctic glaciers, [zvestiya Akademii Nauk SSSR, Seriya Biologicheskaya, 6:897-905.

Finally, we address some of the methodological problems connected to ancient DNA research. 2. INTRODUCTION In recent decades, numerous ice cores have been drilled in many parts of the world including Greenland, Canada, Russia and the Antarctic (Figure 1a, b). P. , 1993). , 1984; Bourgeois, 1986). Most of the organic material in the ice does not lend itself to morphological identification and therefore, little is known of the diversity of organisms in fossil glacier ice (Figure 2a, b). 1 t University of Copenhagen, Department of Evolutionary Biology, Universitetsparken IS, DK-2100 Copenhagen, Denmark The authors have contributed equally to the work and should be regarded as joint first authors.

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