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Re: DINOSAUR CANCER
In a message dated 96-01-24 00:35:45 EST, you write:
>have produced a cancer pandemic among dinosaurs.
> Neutrinos colliding with the nuclei of living atoms could damage DNA,
>nature's genetic building blocks, producing cancer-causing mutations.
> Writing in the New Scientist journal, Collar suggests that a collapsing
>within 20 light years of earth could produce about 12 malignant cells per
>kilogram (2.2 lb) of living tissue.
> The impact would be greater on larger animals like dinosaurs because they
This is yet another rehash of the old supernova hypothesis that remains to
this day debunked. I do not have a ref in front of me but I am nearly certain
that there is NO evidence for a supernova anywhere near the earth that date
anywhere near 65Ma. It seems that a "close by" supernova cannot be proved so
the've gone fishing for more far fetched ones! I also believe that since
neutrinos are nearly massless and have a _mean_free_path_ that is equivalent
to the earths diameter(!) that it would take enourmous neutrino fluxes to
even have enough of them interact with an animal's atoms/molecules to even
register an effect. If there was to be a supernova, it would have to be alot
closer. Cosmic/gamma rays would be the more likely cause if there were a
supernova to talk about.
Thomas R. Lipka