Still squishy after all these years? (apologies to Paul Simon)

The continued existence of original tissue in ancient fossils, such as dinosaurs was so completely unexpected that Dr. Schweitzer described a problem with a reviewer of one of her articles as follows: “I had one reviewer tell me that he didn’t care what the data said, he knew that what I was finding wasn’t possible,” says Schweitzer. “I wrote back and said, ‘Well, what data would convince you?’ And he said, ‘None.'”

Well, despite that reviewers strong adherence to his/her belief system, the data continues to flow. In fact, this should be the top news story of the decade, but is one that evolutionists wish would go away. Not only is original soft tissue preserved but measurable Carbon 14 is also present in dinosaur bones. This is simply incompatible with the claimed age of these fossils. Evolutionists are looking for some new mechanism of preservation to explain this, but based upon the chemistry that we know now, it just shouldn’t be there. Hence the above reviewer’s statement. New data is coming in so fast that a survey article, Double decade dinosaur disquiet: For twenty years now, dino bones have progressively divulged their contents to researchers who did not expect to find the likes of DNA and radiocarbon ‘millions of years’ after dinosaur extinction just published 4 months ago (Jan 2014) is already out of date. Here’s an excerpt from this article, to be followed below by an amazing new find. Be sure to read to the bottom or you’ll miss out. (Note: all specific claims are footnoted in the full article so you can read for yourself.)

Many dinosaur fossils include real bone—they are not completely mineralized, i.e. are not yet ‘rock’. And what is found inside those dinosaur bones is a huge surprise to many people. A series of discoveries since the early 1990s has revealed dino bones with blood cells, hemoglobin, fragile proteins, and soft tissue such as flexible ligaments and blood vessels. And of special note: DNA and radiocarbon.

Schweitzer recounts how she noticed that a T. rex skeleton (from Hell Creek, Montana) had a distinctly cadaverous odour. When she mentioned this to long-time paleontologist Jack Horner, he said, “Oh yeah, all Hell Creek bones smell.” But so ingrained is the notion among paleontologists that dinosaur bones must be millions of years old that the ‘smell of death’ didn’t even register with them—despite the evidence being right under their noses. Schweitzer herself does not seem able or willing to escape the long-age paradigm, despite her direct involvement in many of the discoveries. Note the timeline of these findings across two decades—pointed and regular reminders that something is very wrong with dinosaur-millions-of-years ideas:

In 1993, dinosaur bone blood cells give Mary Schweitzer ‘goosebumps’.

In 1997, hemoglobin, as well as recognizable red blood cells, in T. rex bone.

In 2003, evidence of the protein osteocalcin.

In 2005, flexible ligaments and blood vessels.

In 2007, collagen (an important structural protein in bone) in T. rex bone.

In 2009, the fragile proteins elastin and laminin, and further confirmation of collagen—in a duck-billed dinosaur. (If the dinosaur fossils really were as old as claimed, none of these proteins should have been present.)

In 2012, bone cells (osteocytes), the proteins actin and tubulin, and DNA(!) were reported. (Measured rates of decomposition of these proteins, and especially DNA, show that they could not have lasted for the presumed 65 million years since dinosaur extinction. This is more in keeping with the biblical timeframe of thousands of years.)

In 2012, radiocarbon was reported. (But carbon-14 decays so quickly that if the remains were even 100,000 years old, none should be detectable!)


The following important new article is from the Institute for Creation Research.

Still Soft after Half a Billion Years?

by Brian Thomas, M.S. *

Original soft tissue fossils are revolutionizing our understanding of how and when fossils formed. Secular researchers have described dozens of them over the years, from mummified skin and hemoglobin to dried up retinas—all in rock layers designated at least tens of millions of years old.1 The science of tissue decay does not permit these long ages, calling into question the “age” of the most recent discovery: original, pliable, marine worm tube tissue found in Pre-Cambrian fossils.

Publishing in The Journal of Paleontology, a trio of European researchers described, in detail, delicate fossil casings, manufactured by beard worms long ago. The worms were quickly buried and locked in rock like a natural time capsule. The chitin-containing worm tube fossils look the same as those made by modern worms of the same type, complete with high-tech structural cross-layering.2

First, the study authors described what did not happen to these fossil worm casings, which were not mineralized at all. The scientists’ research ruled out preservation by various means of “mineralization”—where minerals take the place of original biological material. Silicification, phosphatization, carbonization, pyritization, phyllosilicate metamorphism, and apatite permineralization all are processes known to contribute to fossilization in other instances—but not in the case of these worm sheaths.

According to the Paleontology report, “Minerals have not replicated any part of the soft tissue and the carbonaceous material of the wall is primary [not replaced], preserving the original layering of the wall, its texture, and fabrics.” The paper included electron micrographs of some of those fabrics’ fossilized fibers.2

The study authors described the worm wall as still “flexible, as shown by its soft deformation.” And just to be clear, they wrote, “The body wall of S. cambriensis [fossil worm] comprises a chitin-structural protein composite.”2

Fresh-looking material like this soft chitin and its associated proteins should not cause researchers to merely doubt the worm fossils’ 551 million year-old age assignment, but to utterly reject it. However, unless secularists pay homage to the Geologic Time Scale’s age designations for characteristic rock layers, their work would almost certainly fail to be accepted as “scientific.”

The idea that chitin or any unaltered biological material—soft tissue that has not yet decayed—can last longer than a million years does not have any experimental support.1,3 What decay rate measurements back the claim that soft tissues can last for half a billion years? The still-flexible tube tissue of this lowly ancient marine worm matches well with the relatively recent Flood explanation—a worldwide event that buried these sea floor worms beneath hundreds of feet of sediments.


  1. Thomas, B. 2013, A Review of Original Tissue Fossils and their Age Implications[1]. Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Creationism. Pittsburgh, PA. Creation Science Fellowship.
  2. Moczydlowska, M., F. Estall, and F. Foucher. 2014. Microstructure and Biogeochemistry of the Organically Preserved Ediacaran Metazoan Sabellidites. The Journal of Paleontology. 88 (2): 224-239.
  3. Secular thinking might argue that observing thin, soft tissues in rocks that are 551 million years old counts as observational evidence that tissues can last that long, but this merely begs the question by assuming the age—the very premise under review.

Image credit: NOAA

* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.

Article posted on May 5, 2014.

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