This is not a drill, people.
A materials scientist at London’s Imperial College, Sergio Bertazzo, was working with dinosaur bones from the Cretaceous period, when he noticed something more than the usual million-year-old dust.
“One morning I turned on the microscope, increased the magnification, and thought, ‘Wait, that looks like blood!’”
Paleontologist Susannah Maidment could hardly believe it.
“I thought there must be another explanation. That it was bacteria, or pollen, or modern contamination. We went into it with a great deal of skepticism, then attempted to eliminate every other possible hypothesis there could possibly be.”
The red blood cells and collagen strands Bertazzo found suggest that every fossil unearthed to date may contain similar samples of preserved tissue and blood, heretofore overlooked.
So many of the details we can only guess at about dinosaur behavior, diet, evolution may finally be answered.
And if that’s not exciting enough to resurrect your childhood imagination, get this:
The samples might contain viable DNA. We could resurrect the brontosaurus.
Pet triceratops, anyone?
What’s more, we may not even have to mine old fossils for this DNA. Earlier this week, a team of paleontologists and biologists at Yale published a groundbreaking paper explaining how blocking certain genes in dinosaur descendents--- the birds of today --- they could resurrect certain “dino” features. They tested this on a chicken embryo, and were able to transform its beak into something that resembled…the snout of a velociraptor.
Now the question remains….do we want something with the snout of a velociraptor alive and kicking today?
Read more: The Jurassic World Website Is Insane
photo credit: flickr @prayitnophotography