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[dinosaur] Nanostructural preservation of dinosaur femoral bones (free pdf)

Ben Creisler

A new paper:

Jung-Kyun Kim, Yong-Eun Kwon, Sang-Gil Lee, Ji-Hyun Lee, Jin-Gyu Kim, Min Huh, Eunji Lee & Youn-Joong Kim (2017)
Disparities in correlating microstructural to nanostructural preservation of dinosaur femoral bones.
Scientific Reports 7, Article number: 45562 (2017)

Osteohistological researches on dinosaurs are well documented, but descriptions of direct correlations between the bone microstructure and corresponding nanostructure are currently lacking. By applying correlative microscopy, we aimed to verify that well-preserved osteohistological features correlate with pristine fossil bone nanostructures from the femoral bones of Koreanosaurus boseongensis. The quality of nanostructural preservation was evaluated based on the preferred orientation level of apatite crystals obtained from selected area electron diffraction (SAED) patterns and by measuring the “arcs” from the {100} and {002} diffraction rings. Unlike our expectations, our results revealed that well-preserved microstructures do not guarantee pristine nanostructures and vice versa. Structural preservation of bone from macro- to nanoscale primarily depends on original bioapatite density, and subsequent taphonomical factors such as effects from burial, pressure, influx of external elements and the rate of diagenetic alteration of apatite crystals. Our findings suggest that the efficient application of SAED analysis opens the opportunity for comprehensive nanostructural investigations of bone.