Research press release


Nature Communications

Palaeontology: The 'amazing dragon' of Lingwu



今回、Xing Xuたちの研究グループは、中国・寧夏回族自治区の霊武(Lingwu)で、ディプロドクス上科恐竜のこれまでに知られていなかった種の部分的な骨格化石を数点発掘し、Lingwulong shenqi(「霊武の神奇的恐竜」の意)と命名した。これらの化石の年代は約1億7400万年前と決定され、この種が新竜脚類恐竜種の最初期のものとされた。


Diplodocoid dinosaurs were distributed across the supercontinent Pangaea, suggests a paper published in Nature Communications this week. The study reports a new diplodocoid species from the early Middle Jurassic of China (approximately 174 million years ago), challenging conventional views on the origin and dispersal of diplodocoids and other neosauropods.

Sauropods were long-necked, herbivorous dinosaurs and among the longest and largest land animals to have lived. It has been thought that advanced sauropods, the neosauropods, diversified during the breakup of Pangaea and had not reached East Asia before it became isolated.

Xing Xu and colleagues excavated several partial skeletons of a new previously unknown species of diplodocoid dinosaur from the Lingwu region of China, naming it Lingwulong shenqi (literally, the Lingwu amazing dragon). The fossils date from around 174 million years ago, making this species the earliest known neosauropod.

Evolutionary and biogeographic analyses including the new species now suggest that neosauropods were already diverse and widespread in the Middle Jurassic (about 174 to 163 million years ago), rather than rapidly becoming dominant at the transition to the Late Jurassic (163 to 145 million years ago) as previously thought. Furthermore, major sauropod groups may have originated in the Early Jurassic.

doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-05128-1

「Nature 関連誌注目のハイライト」は、ネイチャー広報部門が報道関係者向けに作成したリリースを翻訳したものです。より正確かつ詳細な情報が必要な場合には、必ず原著論文をご覧ください。

メールマガジンリストの「Nature 関連誌今週のハイライト」にチェックをいれていただきますと、毎週最新のNature 関連誌のハイライトを皆様にお届けいたします。