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The lips may have given the T-rex a “cute” look

Lips that hid sharp teeth made Tyrannosaurus Rex not as dangerous as previously thought. That’s what the researchers behind a new study think.

A terrifying monster with large, sharp teeth protruding from its mouth. This is how the Tyrannosaurus rex is depicted, for example in the movie “Jurassic Park”.

But that can be misleading — at least according to a new study by researchers at universities in Canada, England and China.

T-rex and the so-called theropods, a subgroup of dinosaurs that were mostly carnivores, likely had lips that covered their teeth when their mouths were closed. Even when the mouth is wide open and ready to pounce on prey, only the outer part of the teeth may be visible, according to the researchers.

Among other things, the researchers analyzed the skulls and teeth of both extinct and now-living species of reptile, and noted that teeth similar to those of the T-rex were very similar to those of the species that had lips.

The findings change perception of the appearance of these “iconic predators,” the researchers wrote in the journal Science, where the study was published.

But it’s not about “kissable lips,” notes paleontologist Thomas Holtz of the University of Maryland, who was not involved in the new study. but rather about thin, scaly lips, like the large Komodovaran lizard.

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This isn’t the first time the popular image of dinosaurs has been called into question. Other research has shown that the T-rex was more curved than previously thought, and that the relatively small carnivore Velociraptor may have had feathers.