The authors of the new work examined the jaw of a Tyrannosaurus rex and found that it had a complex system of nerves.
The nerve system of the Tyrex was more advanced than that of other dinosaurs and was similar to that of modern crocodiles and some birds. Scientists noted that this system helped to effectively catch and eat prey.
Scientists from the Institute for Dinosaur Research at the University of Fukui Prefecture in Japan, during a new study, studied the internal structure of the mandible of a Tyrannosaurus rex.
Scientists used computed tomography to analyze and reconstruct the neurovascular canal. They then compared the resulting model with other extinct and living species.
The present study shows the presence of complexly branched neurovascular canals in the lower jaw of Tyrannosaurus, especially in the anterior region of the tooth, and it is most likely that a similar complex branched neurovascular canal was also present in its upper jaw.
The authors suggested that the trigeminal nervous system in Tyrannosaurus worked like a sensitive sensor in the face: it could recognize the size and other features of prey. Based on this information, the dinosaur could change its hunting strategy.