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Soft-Tissue Vessels and Cellular Preservation in Tyrannosaurus rex

Science  25 Mar 2005:
Vol. 307, Issue 5717, pp. 1952-1955
DOI: 10.1126/science.1108397

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Abstract

Soft tissues are preserved within hindlimb elements of Tyrannosaurus rex (Museum of the Rockies specimen 1125). Removal of the mineral phase reveals transparent, flexible, hollow blood vessels containing small round microstructures that can be expressed from the vessels into solution. Some regions of the demineralized bone matrix are highly fibrous, and the matrix possesses elasticity and resilience. Three populations of microstructures have cell-like morphology. Thus, some dinosaurian soft tissues may retain some of their original flexibility, elasticity, and resilience.

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