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Ankylosaur osteoderms grew more like mammal osteoderms

From: Ben Creisler

A new online paper:

Sebastián Sensale, Washington Jones & R. Ernesto Blanco (2014)
Does osteoderm growth follow energy minimization principles?
Journal of Morphology (advance online publication)
DOI: 10.1002/jmor.20273

Although the growth and development of tissues and organs of extinct
species cannot be directly observed, their fossils can record and
preserve evidence of these mechanisms. It is generally accepted that
bone architecture is the result of genetically based biomechanical
constraints, but what about osteoderms? In this article, the influence
of physical constraints on cranial osteoderms growth is assessed.
Comparisons among lepidosaurs, synapsids, and archosaurs are
performed; according to these analyses, lepidosaur osteoderms growth
is predicted to be less energy demanding than that of synapsids and
archosaurs. Obtained results also show that, from an energetic
viewpoint, ankylosaurid osteoderms growth resembles more that of
mammals than the one of reptilians, adding evidence to debate whether
dinosaurs were hot or cold blooded.