Analyses of soft tissue from Tyrannosaurus rex suggest the presence of protein

Mary Higby Schweitzer, Zhiyong Suo, Recep Avci, John M. Asara, Mark A. Allen, Fernando Teran Arce, John R. Horner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

132 Scopus citations

Abstract

We performed multiple analyses of Tyrannosaurus rex (specimen MOR 1125) fibrous cortical and medullary tissues remaining after demineralization. The results indicate that collagen I, the main organic component of bone, has been preserved in low concentrations in these tissues. The findings were independently confirmed by mass spectrometry. We propose a possible chemical pathway that may contribute to this preservation. The presence of endogenous protein in dinosaur bone may validate hypotheses about evolutionary relationships, rates, and patterns of molecular change and degradation, as well as the chemical stability of molecules over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)277-280
Number of pages4
JournalScience
Volume316
Issue number5822
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 13 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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