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Data from: Three-dimensional soft tissue preservation revealed in the skin of a non-avian dinosaur

Citation

Fabbri, Matteo; Wiemann, Jasmina; Manucci, Fabio; Briggs, Derek E. G. (2019), Data from: Three-dimensional soft tissue preservation revealed in the skin of a non-avian dinosaur, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.3bk3j9kf1

Abstract

The most commonly preserved soft tissues associated with ornithischian dinosaurs are skin remains. The apparent resistance of hadrosaur skin to decay, and its abundance in the fossil record relative to that of other tetrapods, has been attributed to factors such as thickness and composition. Here we report additional intrinsic factors within hadrosaur skin: 3D‐preserved eumelanin‐bearing bodies, dermal cells and blood vessel fragments in an organic matrix composed of protein fossilization products. The skin is much thinner than that of living mammals of similar size. It is likely that the preservation of hadrosaur skin is related to the arrangement of the layers composing it.

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