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Discovery of Remarkably Well Preserved Epidermal Cell Layers in a Hadrosaur

Fri., Feb. 12, 2016 3:00 p.m. - Fri., Feb. 12, 2016 4:00 p.m.

Location: CL 417

Abstract:   Dinosaurs dominated our planet for about 150 million years. They came in different shapes and sizes, and played different roles in their ecosystem. Some were as small as house cats, while others were gigantic herbivores, while many others were ferocious carnivorous. Their diversity is a testimony of how evolution work, and their abrupt mass extinction attest to the fragility of life in our planet. The legacy left by these incredible animals are the birds, the only dinosaurs still alive. But, how close birds are from dinosaurs? This is yet to be known. Only fossilized bones and few other items were left for scientists to study how these animals lived and died. Most of the time, their anatomic forms and organic structures can only be guessed. Or, is there more than just fossilized bones? 
In this seminar, I will present the recent discoveries, made by my research group, that go beyond just fossilized bone and other imprints. These findings may help to write a new chapter on the way these animals looked, and how they compare to their closest living relatives, the birds. Using cutting edge technology (synchrotron radiation techniques and scanning electron microscopy), we studied the fossilized skin remains of a hadrosaur, giving much insight to structures at the cellular level, and even providing evidences that allow us to speculate on a possible animal colouration.

Speaker:   Mauricio Barbi, University of Regina