Scientists discover an ancient wormlike creature that's the ancestor of all animals - including us

  • In Science
  • 2020-03-24 16:06:14Z
Scientists discover an ancient wormlike creature that\
Scientists discover an ancient wormlike creature that\'s the ancestor of all animals - including us  

Scientists have discovered a fossil of our earliest ancestor: a tiny, wormlike creature that lived about 555 million years ago, according to a new study.

"It's the earliest 'bilaterian' .... which is an organism with a front and back, two symmetrical sides and openings at either end connected by a gut," scientists from the University of California-Riverside said in a statement.

"It's the oldest fossil we get with this type of complexity," UCR geologist and study co-author Mary Droser said. The tiny fossil, about as big as a grain of rice, was discovered in Australia.

Evidence for these early fossils is rare, scientists say. Most studies rely on trace fossils, or the tracks they left behind, rather than preservation of the small, soft-bodied organisms themselves.

With the help of high-tech 3D laser scanning, scientists were able to locate fossils of the distinct tubelike organisms in a former seabed in present-day South Australia.

"Bilateral symmetry," as its known, was a critical step in the evolution of animal life, UCR reported. It gave organisms the ability to move purposefully as well as a common, yet successful way to organize their bodies.

Wonderchicken: Oldest bird fossil discovered, nicknamed 'wonderchicken'

"A multitude of animals, from worms to insects to dinosaurs to humans, are organized around this same basic body plan," according to the UCR statement.

The tiny animal likely spent its life burrowing through layers of sand on the ocean floor, looking for any organic matter on which it could feed, the BBC said.

The creature was given the Latin name Ikaria wariootia, after Ikara, an indigenous Australian word for "meeting place," and Warioota, the name of a local creek.

Droser said the discovery is "what evolutionary biologists predicted. It's really exciting that what we have found lines up so neatly with their prediction."

The study was published Monday in the peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Early bird: New species of tiny 'bird-dinosaur' discovered trapped in 99-million-year-old amber

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Oldest animal ancestor: A 555-million-year-old wormlike creature


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply


  • ZaraPiext
    (2020-03-29 19:16:32Z)

    coronavirus baltimore - chloroquine phosphate 250mg
    coronavirus 8000
    chloroquine sars
    - coronavirus 3 year old
    coronavirus washington dc

  • ZaraPiext
    (2020-03-30 04:23:34Z)

    coronavirus china symptoms - chloroquine phosphate
    coronavirus treatable
    buy chloroquine phosphate 250mg
    - coronavirus 3 cases
    coronavirus baltimore

  • ZaraPiext
    (2020-03-31 06:21:30Z)

    3 coronavirus in johor - chloroquine sars
    what is a coronavirus in humans
    buy chloroquine phosphate online
    - coronavirus 3 mortality rate
    coronavirus location

  • ZaraPiext
    (2020-03-31 07:27:24Z)

    coronavirus azusa - buy chloroquine phosphate online
    coronavirus google translate
    chloroquine phosphate 250mg online
    - coronavirus 10000 dead
    coronavirus prevention

  • ZaraPiext
    (2020-03-31 08:46:19Z)

    coronavirus google translate - chloroquine drug
    coronavirus 80000
    buy chloroquine phosphate online
    - coronavirus xiangguo qiu
    coronavirus kihei

  • ZaraPiext
    (2020-04-01 01:16:47Z)

    5 coronavirus cases us - buy chloroquine 250mg
    n coronavirus death toll
    - coronavirus virus in us
    coronavirus orange county ca

  • ZaraPiext
    (2020-04-01 11:38:02Z)

    coronavirus 63 - chloroquine
    coronavirus 4th us
    - coronavirus em portugues
    coronavirus 5 million

  • ZaraPiext
    (2020-04-01 14:52:16Z)

    coronavirus 75 alcohol - chloroquine phosphate 250 mg
    coronavirus r=h
    chloroquine drug
    - coronavirus 0c43
    2 coronavirus in usa

  • Zartodoky
    (2020-04-04 16:28:19Z)

    coronavirus 4 continents - order chloroquine
    coronavirus flu shot
    chloroquine 250 mg
    - coronavirus examples
    coronavirus logan airport


Top News: Science