Life Science Blog

Curse of the Dino Mummy!

(meets Abbott and Costello and the Wolfman)

December 13, 2007

News of a “dinosaur mummy” has been tearing up the web over the last couple of days. The reports have ranged from the enthusiastic, to the hyperbolic, to the so hyperbolic and enthusiastic you’d think the dinosaur was curing cancer. I, for one, think this whole thing may be bunk.

From what I have seen, and granted, that’s not a lot, it does look like an interesting fossil. However, if I found a fossil with some never before discovered attribute, like muscles and organs as claimed by the researchers in those various articles, I wouldn’t run around half crazy telling everyone I knew about it. I would take the specimen back to my lab, analyze it as carefully as humanly possible to make sure I had what I thought I had, and then I would publish the findings in Nature (they always fall for dinosaur stuff on the cover). The fact that the findings don’t come from a peer reviewed journal, but from the magazine that sponsored the trip, makes me a wee bit skeptical. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

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