Friday, April 13, 2007

From Dino To Chicken Little?

From CNN:

T. rex thigh reveals chicken family ties

CHICAGO, Illinois (Reuters) -- Tiny bits of protein extracted from a 68-million-year-old dinosaur bone have given scientists the first genetic proof that the mighty Tyrannosaurus rex is a distant cousin to the modern chicken.

"It's the first molecular evidence of this link between birds and dinosaurs," said John Asara, a Harvard Medical School researcher, whose results were published in Friday's edition of the journal Science.

Scientists have long suspected that birds evolved from dinosaurs based on a study of dinosaur bones, but until recently, no soft tissue had survived to confirm the link.

The theory of evolution is based on survival of the fittest, with species gradually improving and evolving into yet a better species. So my question is, how did the mighty dinosaur devolve into the lowly chicken?



At April 13, 2007 1:47 PM, Blogger The Musical Engineer said...

Actually, my understanding is that the principal paradigm in evolution is no longer survival of the fittest, but differential reproduction. IE, those traits that either cause or correlate with more births tend to survive. I think that makes T rex to chicken a little more believable.


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