ZURRIAGUZ Virginia Laura
Histology of teeth and tooth attachment in titanosaurs (Dinosauria; Sauropoda)
GARCÍA, RODOLFO; ZURRIAGUZ VIRGINIA
CRETACEOUS RESEARCH (PRINT)
ACADEMIC PRESS LTD-ELSEVIER SCIENCE LTD
Dental histology of periodontal tissues (cementum, periodontal ligament and alveolar bone) has beenstudied in mammals, crocodylians and some basal tetrapods, but these structures have never beenstudied in titanosaur sauropods. The goal of this work was to study the structures of dental insertion inTitanosaurs. Like many physiological processes, histological analysis of titanosaur teeth shows hardtissue formation, characterized by a circadian rhythm. From thin sections it was possible to observemicrostructures such as incremental lines of von Ebner, dentinal tubules and cross striations, all key tothe understanding of developmental tooth dynamics. The structural and histological analyses carried outhere on teeth of Late Cretaceous titanosaurs reveals the presence of acellular and cellular cementum,periodontal ligament, and alveolar bone, all structures necessary for a truly thecodont dentition. This isthe first time documented for a dinosaur via histological tissue, and is an important finding that will helpelucidate aspects of dinosaurian dentition, tooth replacement rate, feeding strategy, metabolism, andgeneral biology.