Dinosaur Soft Tissues: They're Real! | The Institute for Creation Research
Dinosaur Soft Tissues: They're Real!

Paleontologist Mary Schweitzer’s discoveries of soft blood vessels, proteins, various blood cells, and even DNA inside fossilized dinosaur bones have been met with extreme skepticism from the scientific community. It has been well established that such biological structures and molecules should not last beyond a few tens of thousands of years, and could not possibly survive millions of years. So why are they there?

Scientists have made multiple attempts to debunk Schweitzer’s findings. Over the last 15 years, alternate explanations for the soft dinosaur tissue include contamination in the field or in the lab, bacterial activity producing the illusion of blood vessel remains, and the possibility that protein signatures derived from the tissues are actually just statistical artifacts (i.e., distortions or data errors).

In an effort to answer these objections, Schweitzer’s team implemented sterile excavation procedures and had an independent third party analyze their results. They confirmed that the soft tissues could not have come from bacteria. Bacteria do not manufacture products in the shape of vertebrate blood vessels, nor can they produce the kind of collagen found in the dinosaur bones.

The issue has generated such fervor that John Asara of Harvard Medical School, who found clear collagen signatures in Schweitzer’s dinosaur tissues,1 placed his data online so that anyone could access it. Researchers from Palo Alto reanalyzed the data and published their report online in the Journal of Proteome Research.2 They verified that four of Asara’s original seven collagen sequences were clearly legitimate, using different statistical and bioinformatics techniques. So far, there is every indication that the dinosaur soft tissues—incredible as it seems—are real biological leftovers from their once-living hosts.

Three options present themselves for the presence of molecules and blood vessels in creatures that purportedly passed on eons ago. Perhaps the soft tissue is some kind of mistake—it isn’t really organic material. But the number of other possible substances it could be is dwindling. Or perhaps there is an entirely unknown natural process that could have preserved soft tissue for millions of years. But this is a special pleading argument, one with strong laboratory evidence against it. Third, perhaps the soft tissue, and therefore the sedimentary rock that encased it, are thousands—not millions—of years old.

Dinosaur soft tissue leaves the evolutionary paradigm, which must have millions of years in order to achieve even remote plausibility, between a rock and a hard place. However, these dinosaur blood cells and vessels fit perfectly into the biblical history of the world, which indicates that man and dinosaurs both were created on the same day in the relatively recent past.3

References

  1. Asara, J. M. et al. 2007. Protein Sequences from Mastodon and Tyrannosaurus Rex Revealed by Mass Spectrometry. Science. 316 (5822): 280-285.
  2. Bern, M., B. S. Phinney, and D. Goldberg. 2009. Reanalysis of Tyrannosaurus rex Mass Spectra. Journal of Proteome Research. Published online July 15, 2009, accessed July 30, 2009.
  3. Genesis 1:24-27.

* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.

Article posted on August 11, 2009.

The Latest
NEWS
Fossil Chromatin Looks Young
What are the odds that a buried animal would still have intact DNA after 125 million years? Researchers publishing in the journal Communications Biology...

NEWS
Inside October 2021 Acts & Facts
How is the Lord’s handiwork on display at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park? Does the universe look old? What can we learn about science and...

NEWS
Two-Volume Series: Restoring the Truth about Origins
The subject of origins continues to attract interest from the public and the scientific establishment. Understanding our origins informs us of who we are...

ACTS & FACTS
Creation Kids: Floods Form Fossils Fast
Christy Hardy and Susan Windsor* You’re never too young to be a creation scientist! Kids, discover fun facts about God’s creation with...

ACTS & FACTS
A Battle for Hearts
Since the ICR Discovery Center for Science & Earth History opened in fall of 2019, tens of thousands of people have walked through our doors. They...

APOLOGETICS
Eating Bugs Isn't Always So Simple
The Lord Jesus Christ deserves glory for why He made Earth’s diverse creatures, and He also deserves glory for the complicated details of how...

ACTS & FACTS
Does the Universe Look Old?
Since distant galaxies are billions of light-years away, some understandably assume that distant starlight must have taken billions of years to reach...

ACTS & FACTS
Hawaii Behind the Scenes
ICR Research Scientist Dr. Brian Thomas and ICR Video Producer Clint Loveness, with help from friends and family, recently shot footage in Maui, Hawaii,...

ACTS & FACTS
Mutation, Design, and Faith
Any alteration in a cell’s DNA sequence is a mutation. These changes can come from copying errors, exposure to chemicals or radiation, or from...

ACTS & FACTS
Another Function of 'Junk DNA' Discovered
For decades, evolutionists suggested that huge sections of our genome (about half) did not actively code for the production of proteins or polypeptides—and...