Cases of pathological bone growth in Isanosaurus and Spinophorosaurus (Sauropoda)

Benjamin Paul C Jentgen, Koen Stein, Valentin Fischer

Research output: Unpublished contribution to conferencePoster

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The histology of the long bone of sauropods appears uniform and conservative along the Sauropoda evolutionary tree. One of the main aspects of their bone histology is to exhibit a Fibrolamellar Complex (FLC) in the cortex of their long bones. However, we report Radial Fibrolamellar bone (RFB) in the outer cortex of the humeri of a young adult Isanosaurus (Histological Ontogenetic Stage - HOS - 8) and an adult Spinophorosaurus (HOS 12). RFB is regarded as a fast-growing bone tissue and has been documented in a few dinosaurian taxa, but never among Sauropoda. Its outermost position within the cortex raises questions, because such a rapidly apposited bone tissue would rather be expected in the
inner cortex (corresponding to an early juvenile ontogenetic stage). Our thorough histological analysis of these specimens reveals some highly vascularized RFB yielding densely packed plump osteocyte lacunae that can even obscure the surrounding bone in both transverse and longitudinal sections. This osteocyte pattern is restricted to the RFB. Bone remodelling is more expressed in this cortical layer with more dense secondary osteons deposited in the RFB than more internally or externally. This contrasts with the other dinosaurian taxa affected by RFB which contains no secondary osteon in this bone tissue. The individual of Spinophorosaurus represents the first occurrence of RFB in Sauropoda buried in the outer cortex followed by a recovery of a 'normal' FLC after this event meaning this individual survived for some time after its phase of accelerated growth. This sequence of widely distinct modes of bone apposition suggests that these specimens are pathological.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2018
Event5th International Palaeontological Congress - Pierre and Marie Curie Campus of Sorbonne University; National Museum of Natural History, Paris, France
Duration: 9 Jul 201813 Jul 2018


Conference5th International Palaeontological Congress
Abbreviated title5th IPC
Internet address


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