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T. Rex Protein Analysis Supports Dinosaur-Bird Link

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the i'll-take-a-bucket-of-rinchenia-legs-with-potato-wedges dept.

Biotech 242

LanMan04 writes "For the first time, researchers have read the biological signature of a Tyrannosaur — a signature that confirms the increasingly accepted view that modern birds are the descendants of dinosaurs. Analyzing the organic material (collagen protein) found inside the unique fossil linked the collagen to several extant species. The bottom line is that the T. rex's biological signature was most like a bird's, at least based on the first fragmentary data. "It looks like chicken may be the closest among all species that are present in today's databases for proteins and genomes," one of the scientists interviewed said."

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That makes sense (5, Funny)

bonefry (979930) | more than 7 years ago | (#18708957)

Now I know why ... everything tastes like chicken

Re:That makes sense (0, Flamebait)

RalphTheWonderLlama (927434) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709099)

You Six Piece Chicken McNobody!

Re:That makes sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709545)

Somebody tag this "tasteslikechicken".

Re:That makes sense (1)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709589)

dammit, I submitted this story too late :-)

It's kind of inspiring though, to look up and see birds and know that they are the dinosaurs. It's reassuring in a way to know that Life on earth is so resistant to extinction events.

It makes me wonder how similar their behaviour patterns are to those of the ground based dinosaurs. Once a year we have huge flocks gathering over my town before they migrate, and I spend hours watching them soaring around in ever growing numbers (some years under a bird poo resistant umbrella, it has to be said..). The mathematician in me is enthralled by the complex patterns that emerge from such simple behaviour. I know nature is rarely amenable to rule based systems, but the understanding we have gleaned thus far still manages to reveal an elegance that never ceases to be a source of pleasure.

Re:That makes sense (1)

walnutmon (988223) | more than 7 years ago | (#18711377)

Not sure if I would jump to the same conclusion....

Does it really make sense that Dinosaurs became birds, or that birds became dinosaurs and survived the mass extinction. I have a difficult time believing that T-Rex's went on to evolve into birds, it seems much more likely that the T-Rex and other large dinosaurs were flukes and went extinct where the smaller ones with wings lived on.

But I am no evolutionary scientist either.

Re:That makes sense (1)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 7 years ago | (#18711517)

The T-rex didn't evolve into birds, no-one said that.

they are distantly related because they likely share a common ancestor is all.

Leopard Delayed! Leopard Delayed! iPhone rulez! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709625)



Leopard Delayed!
Leopard Delayed!
iPhone rulez!

You know your priorities, Steve, you know your priorities.

The Beepers "History Lesson" (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709729)

I guess the song was half right: dinosaurs aren't reptiles, but still probably delicious.

It's a long line leading to Man
Where are they now?
It's a long line leading to Man
How you do you think it feels to be extinct?
LP info [calarts.edu] , CD info [calarts.edu] .

Dinosaurs! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18708975)

Birds: Not da mama!

Scientists: Yes, they were.

Speaking of Jurassic Park... (2, Interesting)

Kelson (129150) | more than 7 years ago | (#18708977)

(Yes, it's mentioned in the article.)

I rewatched it a few months ago, and found it interesting that some of the concepts about dinosaurs that characters in the film considered "out there" -- namely, that dinosaurs evolved into birds, and that they were probably warm-blooded -- are pretty much the mainstream view today.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (2, Insightful)

L. VeGas (580015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709105)

Hmm.. I might be misremembrin', but I'm pretty sure that the idea of birds evolving from dinosaurs was commonly accepted much earlier than when Jurassic Park came out.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709203)

It was a good idea then, but the evidence was slim and there was a lot more speculation. I really don't remember the specifics, but since then, there were more pieces of evidence that validated the idea.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

Kelson (129150) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709263)

Perhaps, but they make a big point early in the movie to explain it to some people who aren't entirely convinced.

There's a group of spectators at the dig site, Dr. Grant makes some remark about birds being related to the velociraptor skeleton they're looking at, and the spectators laugh. He then proceeds to point out all the similarities. It's right before the part where he scared the kid with his story about velociraptor hunting practices.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (4, Interesting)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709293)

I remember sneering when it was brought up with tones of awe and wonder; I think it was accepted pretty commonly earlier than the movie suggested at the very least.

This sort of stuff always makes me laugh...The idea that bigass dino's like the T-Rex were slow and ungainly hunters...When does nature ever produce slow ungainly hunters? The selection is always for high speed or decent speed and endurance.

Saw a special about the first filming of the giant squid a few months ago (though it was an old documentary), and they were talking about how the theory had been that the giant squid was a lazy predator that just hung out with it's arms dangling, snagging things that drifted through them, and that what the film suggested was that it was a fast, energetic predator...They're saying this with awe, like it had never occurred to them that this could be the case, while showing film of smaller squids doing their lightning fast attacks.

In retrospect it seems silly to have ever believed that dinosaurs could have been anything like as slow as was commonly thought, but it's a mistake that is not uncommon.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (2, Insightful)

Tofystedeth (1076755) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709713)

The latest I heard on the T. Rex (granted this was a few years ago) was that it was not a slow,ungainly hunter, but a slow, ungainly scavenger. Something about scarring on the bones or somesuch indicating that T Rexs may have taken quite a bit of abuse. Wait Wait Don't Tell Me's leadin into that was if Jurassic Park were recast today, the T. Rex would be a Woody Allen type character. Don't know if this has been proven or debunked yet, but it was interesting.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18710543)

[[[When does nature ever produce slow ungainly hunters? The selection is always for high speed or decent speed and endurance.]]]

mmm... whales, whale sharks, about a half dozen eels, angler fish, starfish, manta rays and a whole lot of other animals are all slow, ungainly hunters. there's a trade-off between size and speed, and you need a pretty impressive metabolism to have both.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

LurkerXXX (667952) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710783)

Many predators, like crocodiles, aren't really what I'd call 'high speed' or big on endurance. They are sneaky, only able to make a quick lunge about the length of their body. If T-Rex was a predator (as opposed to a scavenger), it might not have been (or needed to be) 'fast'.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709341)

Hmm.. I might be misremembrin', but I'm pretty sure that the idea of birds evolving from dinosaurs was commonly accepted much earlier than when Jurassic Park came out.
IIRC, I had a book when I was pretty young, at least ten years before Jurassic Park came out (i.e. early 1980s) that described birds as the descendants of dinosaurs.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

lawpoop (604919) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709233)

I was into dinosaurs as a child and a teenager. IIRC, this was a theory with some scientific evidence as early as the 80s.

In fact, Ornithiscia [wikipedia.org] one of the latin names to describe a certain dinosaur lineage translates as "bird hips" -- but in fact birds descended from the , or Saurischia [wikipedia.org] , or "lizard hip" dinosaurs. Weird. I couldn't figure out from my cursory look into wikipedia when the theory first arose.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (5, Insightful)

radtea (464814) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709631)

In fact, Ornithiscia one of the latin names to describe a certain dinosaur lineage translates as "bird hips" -- but in fact birds descended from the , or Saurischia, or "lizard hip" dinosaurs.

The curious thing that birds, dinosaurs and mammals all have in common is the placement of the legs underneath the body. This is what made it possible for dinosaurs and mammals to get so big. Other lizards are stuck with their legs sticking out to the sides, which limits weight-bearing capacity and means the really big ones are primarily aquatic.

What makes this curious is that this particular innovation appears to have only evolved once in some common ancestor of mammals and dinosaurs. This suggests it must be very unlikely to evolve--much less likely than other things like wings and eyes, which have evolved independently many times. Maybe the early fossil record will eventually show that it in fact arose more than once, but it's such a huge advantage that if it were possible to get it easily one would think that it would be done more often, and it is odd that no other reptile has ever pulled it off.

Did Someon Call the Skeptic? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18710593)

for starters...

http://research.unc.edu/endeavors/spr97/bird.html [unc.edu]

secondly, i'm not sold here. it may well do what they claim - or it might not.

what i want them to do is to take KNOWN species and run the same test to see if any known, distinct species *appear* to be descended from one another using their methodology.

seems easy enough to do, so why not do it? wouldn't it tell us how accurate the analysis is?

one needs to look at this data in context in order to properly value what it is telling us.

that context is absent from the article and, perhaps, from the study.

"Once more of them get sampled, then we can start being able to compare the extinct with the extinct," he said. "Then they could really support, or overturn, previous hypotheses. The results of this paper aren't so much that they have made an important contribution to our understanding of T. rex or mastodons, but rather that they are opening a window into an entirely new approach to these fossils."


why limit it to fossils? again, why not test the veracity of this analysis against a number of knowns to see if the results reflect what we'd expect?

Horner told journalists that the findings already have strengthened the dinosaur-bird connection: "It's the first way we can test the hypothesis of relationships. ... This is a test, and we have failed to falsify that dinosaurs and birds are related. It changes our hypothesis to a theory now."


funny, everyone i heard trumpeting dinosaurs as obvious transitional entities to birds didn't use to say their belief was a mere hypothesis.

also, what were the differences found? did any of the results match anything else? what came in second and how close in second was it? did it have any similarities to fish?

i'm afraid that scientists have lost the valuable trait of skepticism when it comes to this kind of thing. a little data comes in and it is trumpeted without much effort to question it or provide context.

if you didn't click the first time i posted it, click this time:

http://research.unc.edu/endeavors/spr97/bird.html [unc.edu]

no, it isn't a right wing religious diatribe. it is a skeptical scientist that believes in macro-evolution who has the integrity to question what everyone so dearly wants to be true.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (3, Funny)

14erCleaner (745600) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709257)

Well, given that chickens are identified as the closest living relatives, it appears that the Flintstones eating barbecued dinos weren't all that far "out there" either.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

Hoi Polloi (522990) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709969)

"It looks like chicken may be the closest among all species"

Ummmm, I'm having fried TRex for dinner tonight!

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709399)

The more likely senario is parallel development. Birds split off well before T-Rexs evolved. The real debate is how far back the split occured. It was at least mid Jurassic and possibly as far back as preTriassic. There are early reptiles that have feathers and winglike structures. No one is debating dinosaurs and birds are closely related but it's a myth T-Rexs evolved into birds. Birds were around long before the first T-Rex. T-Rexs are considered the most birdlike but it's from parallel development not direct evolutionary ties.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709911)

"It was at least mid Jurassic and possibly as far back as preTriassic..."

Psst, everybody knows the Earth is only 6000 years old. What *assic period? Ask any Evangelical Christian. They'll set you straight. They are the new scientist with all the answers, you know.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (2, Interesting)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709499)

Why would we assume *all* dinosours evolved from birds?

Its entirely feasible for a large proportion to go that way, but a brontosaurus or triceratops are closer to being a whale than a pre-prehistoric A380.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

daddymac (244954) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709583)

Why would we assume *all* dinosours evolved from birds


I don't think anyone has ever in their entire life assumed that, since dinosaurs were here a long time before birds.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (2, Interesting)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709691)

No, what I mean is, just because we now have a genetic line between t-rex and birds in general, that does not mean that every dinosaur is linked to birds.
That is like taking a single generic sampling nowadays and taking that as representative of every living creature.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

css-hack (1038154) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710321)

Of course not. The GP was just explaining that you had the link backwards.

Just try to imagine all those trees they showed you in school. Different dinosaurs might be on the same level, beside each other, connected by a common ancestor. Birds might descend from only one dinosaur species, but they still share an ancestry with all of them.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710673)

There have been some pretty big birds:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moa [wikipedia.org]

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

saforrest (184929) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709505)

I rewatched it a few months ago, and found it interesting that some of the concepts about dinosaurs that characters in the film considered "out there" -- namely, that dinosaurs evolved into birds, and that they were probably warm-blooded -- are pretty much the mainstream view today.


They were mainstream in 1994 too. Even when I was a kid in the early eighties I remember seeing mainstream science programs constrasting the nimble warm-blooded dinosaurs with the old-school nineteenth century characterization as cold-blooded giant lizards.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709627)

I rewatched it a few months ago, and found it interesting that some of the concepts about dinosaurs that characters in the film considered "out there" -- namely, that dinosaurs evolved into birds, and that they were probably warm-blooded -- are pretty much the mainstream view today.

Shouldn't come as much of a surprise though. The film is fourteen years old, and the book older yet. At that time those concepts were "out there" - there was a lot of suspicion that they might be true, but precious little evidence.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (4, Interesting)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709635)

what I especially like about Jurassic park is that Speilberg decided they had to have six foot tall Velociraptors for the film, which was considered absurd, then within months six foot tall Velociraptor fossils were discovered.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18710559)

A few references for anyone interested...

John Ostrom of Yale University definitely supported the theory that birds might have evolved from a theropod dinosaur branch back in the early 1980's, I believe. Dr. Ostrom's ideas were then popularized by the publication of Dr. Robert Bakker's book "The Dinosaur Heresies", which is an interesting, colorful read, although admittedly Bakker doesn't always stick strictly to the science and he seems to rely too heavily on cladistic studies which don't take chronologies into consideration.

John Horner's "Digging Dinosaurs" was published not long after "The Dinosaur Heresies" and documents Horner's excavation of fossilized maiasaur nests containing crushed eggshells and bones of juvenile animals with incompletely developed joints, suggesting that they stayed in the nests and were cared for, similar to the way modern birds care for their hatchlings.

In the book "Jurassic Park" it is quite clear that Michael Crichton was aware of the work of Ostrom, Bakker and Horner, and in fact it seemed to me that he modeled his character Alan Grant after John Horner.

Regarding the size of the velociraptors in "Jurassic Park", at the time of its publication I don't recall that any six-foot-tall velociraptors had been discovered. However, a closely related species, Deinonychus, was known at the time, and it actually fits Crichton's description better than the velociraptors that were originally excavated in Asia.

Also, for anyone interested and close enough to visit, Peabody Museum in New Haven, CT has two Deinonychus models (I don't think they're original fossils, which would be quite rare) on display in its great room.

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710829)

Nice follow up information. I would have looked for some references, but half a bottle of white rum said otherwise...

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710305)

namely, that dinosaurs evolved into birds
Are the dinosaurs we're talking about the big, familiar ones like T Rex and Triceratops? Or do birds and those big land dinosaurs share a common ancestor, technically also a dinosaur, that was smaller?

Re:Speaking of Jurassic Park... (2, Interesting)

Tatarize (682683) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710965)

Heh. They were there and pretty well accepted at the time. However, JP actually seems way off in a number of regards even back then. For example, Velociraptor are turkey sized, covered with feathers, and wings and could easily have been capable of flight. Rather than a fierce predator T. Rex was most likely a lumbering scavenger, with an opportunistic attack here and there; easily they could have been covered with down and been quite ugly.

We would have a more accurate opinion of dinosaurs if we managed to completely dispel the lizard myth. They are no more lizards than mammals are lizards.

After we do that, we also need to redefine genus Avis. How we still classify birds as non-dinosaurs escapes me (though I also think it's pathetic that Humans aren't classified as apes). It seems that you have a pretty clear line. Fish -> Amphibian -> Reptile -> -> Dinosaur -> Bird. Just as we are Fish -> Amphibian -> Reptile -> Mammal-like-reptile -> Mammal. I guess it's all a sort of trouble with the taxon system. We tend to view certain animals as a species rather than the continuation of a gene pool that may or may not have branched off to other gene pools.

Jesus put it there to test us... (0, Flamebait)

csoto (220540) | more than 7 years ago | (#18708983)

Everybody knows T. Rex walked along with Adam and Eve. Well, maybe not "knows," but "believes."

ObHicks (5, Funny)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709319)

"Dinosaur fossils? God put those there to test our faith."

"I think God put you here to test my faith, Dude."

Let me reword your post a little bit ... (0, Redundant)

GNUALMAFUERTE (697061) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709811)

"The Bible? Evolution put it there to test our stupidity."

"I think Evolution put you here to test my superiority, Dude."

Re:Let me reword your post a little bit ... (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710071)

That was stupid. Leave the works of Bill Hicks alone.

T-Rex the other white meat (3, Funny)

Goalie_Ca (584234) | more than 7 years ago | (#18708985)

Does it taste like chicken? MMMmmmm T-Rex Wings.

Re:T-Rex the other white meat (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709155)

Wings? Those tiny, bony, little things? Give me a drumstick. Meat is for the man. The bone is for the dog.

Re:T-Rex the other white meat (2, Funny)

miskatonic alumnus (668722) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709327)

In original or extra crispy, only from KFT.

Re:T-Rex the other white meat (1)

arivanov (12034) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709977)

Reminds me of the beginning of the "Amber" series by Zelazny where they drive up the road through the multitude of worlds and stop for a snack at "Kentucky Fried Lizards".

BREAKING NEWS! How the dinosaurs died (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709537)

A reasearch team has found some T-Rex fossils found in a hole show traces of plant oils and other materials. The research team leader, Dr K.F.C. Saunders, reports that initial spectral analysis suggests that the dinosaurs rolled about in breadcrumbs and a mix of twenty as yet unidentified herbs and spices before jumping into boiling oil.

If you think T-Rex Wings is interesting (1)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709725)

Wait till you have the breast meat and drum sticks.

Conundrum (0, Redundant)

trongey (21550) | more than 7 years ago | (#18708993)

I don't know whether to go with a "tastes like dinosaur" or "Chicken of Bristol" remark. Decisions, decisions.

An interesting resolution... (5, Funny)

Garridan (597129) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709003)

Interesting resolution to an old debate:

Which came first, the chicken or the egg? T-Rex!

An interesting resolution... (1)

AnotherUsername (966110) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709669)

All I want to know is when will I achieve my childhood dream of owning my own triceratops. Parking pass? I don't need no stinkin' parking pass!

Here comes the rooster (5, Funny)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709103)

I've always thought roosters had that look in their eye.. you know.... like they'd eat you in a second, if they could.

Re:Here comes the rooster (5, Funny)

stefanlasiewski (63134) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709297)

Funny. I bet he thinks the same thing about you. I bet he's telling his rooster friends on Sqwackdot right now!

Re:Here comes the rooster (5, Funny)

d3m0nCr4t (869332) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709993)

>. news for chickens. Stuff that matters.

Re:Here comes the rooster (1)

Clever7Devil (985356) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710039)

Yeah, but the amount of content on Squackdot is really lacking. The theory is that it's directly related to typing speed, what with all roosters having to hunt and peck.

Re:Here comes the rooster (1)

qualidafial (967876) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709363)

Look out, it's coming right for us! **BANG**

Re:Here comes the rooster (1)

inviolet (797804) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710297)

I've always thought roosters had that look in their eye.. you know.... like they'd eat you in a second, if they could.

All lifeforms have that look in their eye. That is, after all, the way of things.

Indeed, quite a few of those lifeforms are just biding their time, scurrying hungrily around our feet as we drunkenly enjoy our dominion.

We once scurried hungrily around the feet of the dinosaurs, you know. And the smart money is on the rodents to be the next rulers of the Earth.

Since "tastes like chicken" has been done... (2, Funny)

russotto (537200) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709135)

I'd just like to say "How the mighty have fallen".

Re:Since "tastes like chicken" has been done... (5, Funny)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709359)

> I'd just like to say "How the mighty have fallen".

I'll give it a try.

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two former drumsticks, turn'd to stone,
Stand in Wyoming. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And razor teeth and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those proteins read
Which yet survive, stamp'd in this lifeless thing,
The hand that mock'd them and the mouth that fed.
And in the fossil rock these words appear:
"My name is Tyrannosaur, Chicken King"
Look on my works, ye primates, and cluck!"
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal Rex, asteroid-fuck'd,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

- With apologies to Percy Bysshe Shelley. I think it's still a sonnet.

Re:Since "tastes like chicken" has been done... (1)

radtea (464814) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709539)

Look on my works, ye primates, and cluck!"

Should probably be "go cluck" to get the metre correct.

Extremely funny, either way.

nice (2)

insanemime (985459) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709165)

This is pretty awesome. I know this has been a theory for many years now but to have it actually confirmed is another win for the scientific community. Its times like this that it boggles my mind how some people of faith can ignore all proof of evolution.

Re:nice (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709561)

Ignorance is bliss.

Re:nice (0, Redundant)

Crazy Taco (1083423) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710287)

Hypothetical Question: If there was an all powerful designer, and he wanted to create a T-Rex and a chicken, would they not necessarilly be similar, just as this data shows? After all, you are dealing with very similar constraints (oxygen atmosphere for respiration, water needed for life, etc), the same programming language (DNA), and you want similar features in each organism (i.e. clawlike feet, etc). Wouldn't you need a lot more than a similarity to prove evolution and disprove God? You are going to see similarities between organisms based on constraints (and, if you assume creationsim, the fact that you have the same designer as well), so wouldn't you want to actually see the descendency path from the T-Rex to the chicken to prove an evolutionary link? In my opinion, saying a T-Rex shares a lot of similarities with a Chicken proves nothing except that they are similar. To prove that one truly descended from the other, I think you need to see a descendency path will all the intermediate species. After all, you can say Mars and the Earth are very similar, and indeed they are, but one didn't come from the other.

Re:nice (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710929)

So hypothetically, if you don't have enough evidence to support one assumption, it makes more sense to make an assumption that there can be no evidence for?

c08 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709167)

Ofone single puny culture of abuse FrreBSD because f1ound out about the it will be among truth, for all my bedpost up my

oh, my turn.... (0, Redundant)

mikerubin (449692) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709171)

I, for one, welcome our flightless, warm-blooded, aviary-predecessing overlords.

Of course it's like chicken... (3, Funny)

TomSawyer (100674) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709173)

How would the machines know what a T-Rex's DNA was like.

don't really know but guessing... (1)

insanemime (985459) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709291)

I was thinking bone marrow possibly or reminants of hair or some such items trapped within the fossels. I think you can get DNA from marrow but I may be wrong...

Re:Of course it's like chicken... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709665)

If you close your eyes, it kind of tastes like runny SPAM.

Darwinian Payback (2, Interesting)

mlwmohawk (801821) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709251)

So, the former "top of the food chain" eventually becomes the staple to the successors of mere vermin in his time.

In a few tens of millions of years, tiny little human decedents will be eaten by large intelligent mice.

Mememememe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709433)

In a few tens of millions of years, tiny little human decedents will be eaten by large intelligent mice.
And I for one welcome our..... ah, sod it.

Re:Darwinian Payback (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709517)

More likely intelligent hives of insects.

Re:Darwinian Payback (1)

rapidweather (567364) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710145)

Down the Interstate goes the 18-Wheeler, with it's load of live chickens going to market. To be made into "chicken", and wind up on one of Martha Stewart's TV shows, as the feature dish. Martha will have an expert chef as a guest that day, to help her fix the chicken dish, to the oohs and aahs of the audience.
Then, without warning, the 18-Wheeler tips over, while trying to go around on a clover-leaf, taking the turn too fast. The trailer flips over on it's side, and most, if not all, of the cages scatter on the ground by the roadside.
People call 911 on their cell phones, and soon, the Fire Department, Highway Patrol, and local City Police decend on the scene. Some of the chickens have escaped their cages, perhaps 50 or so, maybe more. A few of the birds are injured, so other authorities are called, to help in the roundup, and to do something about the hurt birds so the schoolbus full of children passing by on the shoulder of the road, guided by a Highway Patrolman, will know in their hearts that these innocent feather friends are being cared for properly. Not knowing that they would have reached the poultery processing plant soon, if it were not for the wreck, and would be turned into chicken McNuggets before dawn.
Looking down from the clouds at the unfolding scene, is St. T-Rex, having been sent there for his general good works toward other T-Rexes during his lifetime, millions of years ago. Since the experiment to turn T-Rexes into an advanced race of creatures capable of doing things like "inventing automobiles", etc. did not work out, St. T-Rex has been without much to do for a long, long time, having been replaced by St. Peter, himself.
"It figures", said St. T-Rex. "We should have spent more time trying to create useful operating systems to run on PC's than running around eating smaller creatures"
Soon, at the scene of the wreck, all is cleaned up, and the traffic is flowing smoothly, thanks to the efforts of the law enforcement officials, and the Fire Department.
The school children are in class now, and the teacher has asked them to take their crayolas and draw what they saw on the Interstate. That goes badly for some of the boys, when the teacher takes the red color away from them.
What's this? In the bushes near the Interstate is one lone chicken, escaped into the wild. Making it's way back home, it stops to look up at the sign over the entrance. It says "Welcome to Jurassic Park".

Re:Darwinian Payback (1)

dimeglio (456244) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710891)

Since dinosaures "evolved" into birds, does it means that we humans might eventually fly like birds do? I wonder what the airlines and the aircraft industry have to say about this. After all, if evolution is what it is, ie natural selection, there is plenty of "evolution" left to do! Looking at the size of NBA players, I can see where were heading.

How old are these Dinos? (1)

Robowally (649265) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709309)

When they broke the bone into pieces for transport, they were amazed to find that some of the dinosaur's soft tissues appeared to be preserved within. Previously, paleontologists had thought all the tissues of a fossil turned to minerals over the course of millions of years.

After analyzing the tissues under a microscope, Schweitzer reported in 2005 that they looked similar to the cells and blood vessels found in ostrich bones. But at that time, "we could not directly address what that material was made of," she said during a teleconference with journalists this week.

Sounds a lot like these dinos may not be all that old. How long would proteins expect to last in a recognizable form?

Re:How old are these Dinos? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18710089)

No more than a week, I reckon.

Please forgive me (5, Funny)

truckaxle (883149) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709331)

I, for one, welcome our new edible and delicious overloads (hmmm extra crispy or original recipe ....)

I sense a great disturbance in the Force (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709345)

As if a hundred million anti-evolutionists screamed in terror and then were suddenly silenced by scientific proof.

Source of protein (5, Interesting)

jshriverWVU (810740) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709353)

I'm more curious about what methods they used to "isolate the collagen proteins". From my understanding ALL fossils are not the real bone or organic matter that the animal once was, but a mineral deposit in the shape of the once present organic material. So how did you get T.Rex dna out of a non-organic rock formed like a bone?

Re:Source of protein (1)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709573)

There were some big stories in the past year or so stating something to the effect of scientists finding extremely well preserved bones that even still had soft cartilage in them, which I'm assuming is related to this.

Re:Source of protein (4, Informative)

Rei (128717) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709677)

For the most part, it has long been assumed that all dinosaur fossils had little to no organic material inside them. However, there was an incident, something like a year ago, when they couldn't fit a particularly large T-rex bone inside a helicopter, and cut it instead. They noticed that the fossil still had a bit of give on the inside and it looked like fresh tissue. A new study was initiated, and they dissolved the mineralized portion of the bone (and of others). What was left was the springy organic material -- even blood vessels were intact. They were not only able to study the proteins, but they were even able to tell that one of the dinosaurs studied was a brooding female [physorg.com] .

Organic preservation like this is still believed to be a rare phenominon, but I'd expect many more ancient fossils to be inspected for organic remains from now on. Too bad DNA is as unstable in the long term as it is, though.

Re:Source of protein (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18710971)

It was once a scientific "fact" that organic material like this could not last 65 million years.
Now that it has been found, there are two possibilities:
1. Another "fact" has been discovered to be false.
2. The organic material is only thousands of years old.

No scientist who wants to keep their job will posit the second option as a possibility.

The egg came first (1)

countSudoku() (1047544) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709395)

Dinos invented it, then birds ripped off the idea like Microsoft would have done.

This is why I always tell my 5/yo; Dino (shaped chicken) Nuggets are made with *REAL* dinosaurs! It's a fact.

Argh, bad science reporting. (4, Insightful)

Miraba (846588) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709441)

The bottom line was that the T. rex's biological signature was most like a bird's, at least based on the first fragmentary data. "It looks like chicken may be the closest among all species that are present in today's databases for proteins and genomes," Asara said.
Today's databases being the key words. Our current database of fully sequenced genomes is pathetically small, but most news outlets are reporting "T. rex was giant chicken!" When another dinosaur bone with protein fragments is found, then we'll have a better idea. Seven sequences does not a genome make.

Re:Argh, bad science reporting. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18710033)

"Seven sequences does not a genome make."

Are you learning German?

"I habe viel Bier getrunken" :)

Re:Argh, bad science reporting. (1)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710723)

It's ok, they'll just complete it with frog DNA.

Re:Argh, bad science reporting. (1)

Miraba (846588) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710839)

Ok, that made me laugh. I have an image of a T. rex hopping and saying ribbit.

I did my own dinosaur protein analysis... (1)

OglinTatas (710589) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709447)

...it tastes like chicken. /obligatory

in other news, foxes running from henhouses... (2, Funny)

swschrad (312009) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709511)

as giant 40-foot toothed chickens chase them across the countryside. protests in England have already begun to protect the foxes.

breeding farmer Clancy Hogtrough said, "Hail, all I wanted to do was slow down those three-legged chickens of mine. Never found out if they were tasty, cause we could never catch 'em."

we hope to re-establish our satellite link shortly for our live report from Cuddles Fernbreath....

blue front amazon parrots (1)

QAChaos (793637) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709643)

I know the article doesn't mention a match with parrots but my girlfriend has a blue front amazon and I swear they act just like how I would think a T Rex would act. They growl and they even have "orange eyes" when they are totally pissed off or excited... Q A K

Re:blue front amazon parrots (2, Funny)

gyrogeerloose (849181) | more than 7 years ago | (#18711197)

Yeah, same here. We have an yellow-headed Amazon and I've been convinced that if he's not a direct descendant of a dinosaur, he must be channeling one. It's an interesting coincidence that parrots are one of the earliest of modern birds to show up in fossil records.

FP GoAT (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709697)

world's Gay Niiger

Talk about slow lab test results. (1)

maxwells_deamon (221474) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709789)

Thats one way of making sure you do not have to pay child support.

Just send your sample to a lab that takes millions of years to process your paternity test.

Research confirms Chicken-Human Link! (3, Interesting)

guidarr (1087699) | more than 7 years ago | (#18709801)

I would love to know just how similar the proteins were. Here is interesting research showing how the human and chicken genomes are also very similar. http://www.livescience.com/animalworld/chicken_gen ome_041208.html [livescience.com] Not sure what the T-Rex data proves, other than lots of creatures have a similar genetic composition to a chicken. Guess this means that I'm "related" to a T-rex too, since I apparently came from a chicken...could explain my short arms and overbite. I'm more interested in the fact that T-Rex soft tissue can survive for, supposedly, 65M years...

Very scary! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18709975)

The scariest chicken to ever have walked on earth!

Who knew? (1)

xerxesVII (707232) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710439)

I always thought Marc Bolan was simply an awesome musician. Now I found out that he's also performing protein analysis from beyond the grave. T. Rex... still the best.

Troolkore (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18710489)

The failure of Users Wi7h Large

Tyro Rex Supersaur (seasonal) (1, Funny)

rewinn (647614) | more than 7 years ago | (#18710993)

"From "Tyro Rex Supersaur"

VOICE OF GORGOS
Every time we excavate it bothers your friends
That you'd let the mammals be the cause of your end
Was it something special that we can't comprehend?
Why could you not stick around until the Age of Men?
If you came today you could have eaten whole nations
The Mesozoic era had no overpopulation
Don't you get me wrong - I only want to know.

CHOIR
Tyro Rex, Tyro Rex
Are you the best that Nature selects?
Tyro Rex, Supersaur
Why is it that you exist no more?

VOICE OF GORGOS
Tell me your opinion of the great carnivores
Who'd you think could ever rival King of the Saurs?
Sabertooth was mighty tough the stories do tell
But Tyro you were greatest and you knew that very well
Could you know of Barnum Brown who'd be first to find you?
Did you think Roy Chapman Andrews
Would today enshrine you?
Don't you get me wrong - I only want to know.

CHOIR
Tyro Rex, Tyro Rex
Are you the best that Nature selects?
Tyro Rex, Supersaur
Why is it that you exist no more?"

FULL LIBRETTO: Tyro Rex Supersaur [rewinn.com]

yuo Fail i7!! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18711211)

to any BSD proj3ct, that he d0cuments Lesson and

hmmm.... (1)

smackt4rd (950154) | more than 7 years ago | (#18711399)

I don't think I'll ever look at a chicken in quite the same way again... :)
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