Nature (Vol. 436, No. 7049, 21 July 2005)

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This narrow range in bed shear stress plus the mean value for ȕ constrain the associated near-bed flow field2,3 (Fig. 1). With these parameters, T is the only surface-wave property that can be estimated from sedimentary deposits1,3. Airy wave theory relates wavelength (L), H and h to near-bed flow conditions1,3; however, an infinite combination of these variables can produce the same near-bed conditions (Fig. 1). Allen and Hoffman only consider transport conditions at ȢǃȢc, which yields a maximum estimate for T.

A rate of deposition associated with this climb is tightly constrained by T, and is calculated to be about 1 cm minǁ1. This high rate seems to rule out spontaneously precipitating carbonate4 as the sediment source for the ripples. At this rate, the entire sequence shown in Fig. 3 of ref. 1 could have been deposited in less than 3 h. A small number of short-duration events do not place any constraint on associated climate conditions. Our results (Fig. 1) show that the preserved orbital ripples1 could have formed under rather mundane environmental conditions2, and therefore do not provide evidence for extreme climate change.

6. , Shepherd, P. , Gnudi, L. & Kahn, B. B. Am. J. Physiol. Endocrinol. Metab. 268, E956–E964 (1995). 7. , Shepherd, P. R. & Kahn, B. B. Proc. Nutr. Soc. 55, 191–199 (1996). 8. Abel, E. D. et al. Nature 409, 729–733 (2001). 9. , Gottesman, M. E. & Blaner, W. S. Mol. Aspects Med. 24, 421–430 (2003). 10. , Capron, C. , Nguyen, E. & Chabot, G. G. Curr. Drug Metab. 4, 1–10 (2003). 11. Ferre, P. Diabetes 53 (Suppl. 1), S43–S50 (2004). 12. McGarry, J. D. Diabetes 51, 7–18 (2002). 13. Sivitz, W. , Desautel, S.

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