Chicken Beaks and Dinosaur Snouts
Modern birds evolved from a group of small carnivorous dinosaurs 150 million years ago. Developmental biologist Bhart-Anjan Bhullar, working with his doctoral advisor Arhat Abzhanov, retraced this history by molecularly transforming an embryonic chicken beak into a snout that was structurally similar to a small dinosaur. Bhullar discusses what this genetic approach could tell us about the transition from dinosaurs to chickens.
Bhart-Anjan Bhullar is post-doctoral scholar at the University of Chicago and assistant professor and curator of geology and geophysics at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.