Evolution of Feathers

Have you seen our newest publication regarding the evolution of feathers from dinosaurs to birds?

Partnering with Mary Schweitzer-Higby at North Carolina State University and Yanhong Pan at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, insight into the evolution of feathers was recently described by utilizing selective polyclonal antibodies against peptide epitopes for different α and β-keratins from birds and reptiles.

Fluorescently labeled antibodies were used to show that on exceptionally well-preserved fossils of the dinosaur Anchiornis the keratins were a mixture of both α and β keratins, unlike modern extant birds which have only the structurally stable β-keratins.