Bone Histology Analysis of Ceratopsian Dinosaur Einiosaurus Growth Curve

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Northern Kentucky University
Abstract
"Paleohistology, the study of microscopic anatomy of fossil organisms, has been on the forefront of paleontological research for some time now. The microstructure of fossils lends evidence into how a dinosaur, or even a population of dinosaurs could have survived, grown, lived, and died (Chinsamy, 1995). The way the bone is formed can act as evidence for how Einiosaurus grew as they aged. Highly vascular tissue and dense osteocytes (bone cells) is evidence for rapid growth in a sample specimen and also imply an elevated metabolism (Levitt, 2013: page iv), whereas sparse vascular tissue and light osteocytes would imply slow growth. The question we were asking is ‘What does the orientation and density of osteocytes and vascular canals in these limb bones tell us about the physiology of this species of dinosaur?’. Using Adobe Illustrator we were able to standardize the samples and categorize the amount of vascular canals in each specimen. This resulted in Tibia 6 and 10 showing the most rapid growth, and Tibia 14 showing the slowest growth. The results of this study do not concur with Reizner’s original growth curve, and thusly further studies prove necessary."
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2020 Celebration of Student Research and Creativity presentation
Keywords
Dinosaurs -- Paleohistology, Ceratopsidae
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