The unique tooth structure of carnivorous theropods such as Tyrannosaurus rex allowed them to tear through the flesh and bones of other dinosaurs with ease, and likely led to their success according to new research. The research team found that the deeply serrated structure, and the special arrangement of tissue inside, strengthened the teeth and improved their function.
Using scanning electron microscopes and a synchrotron researchers analyzed tooth slices from eight carnivorous theropods, including T. rex, Allosaurus and Coelophsis, one of the first theropods. They found interdental folds on both erupted and unerupted teeth, and believe that these folds likely strengthen the serrations seen on the edge of the teeth.
Original research paper published in Scientific Reports on July 28, 2015.
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