Latest Trichoplax Stories
Researchers funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) at the University of Oxford have uncovered a clue that may help to explain why the earliest evidence of complex multicellular animal life appears around 550 million years ago, when atmospheric oxygen levels on the planet rose sharply from 3% to their modern day level of 21%.
Since the days of Charles Darwin, researchers are interested in reconstructing the "Tree of Life", and in understanding the development of animal and plant species during their evolutionary history.
Yale molecular and evolutionary biologists in collaboration with Department of Energy scientists produced the full genome sequence of Trichoplax, one of nature's most primitive multicellular organisms, providing a new insight into the evolution of all higher animals.
Resembling a smudge more than an animal, a mysterious life form known as a placozoan has now joined other obscure and primitive creatures whose genomes are providing insight into how animals first arose more than 650 million years ago.