Ancient steroids establish the Ediacaran fossil Dickinsonia as one of the earliest animals

@article{Bobrovskiy2018AncientSE,
  title={Ancient steroids establish the Ediacaran fossil Dickinsonia as one of the earliest animals},
  author={Ilya Bobrovskiy and Janet M. Hope and Andrey Ivantsov and Benjamin J. Nettersheim and Christian Hallmann and Jochen J. Brocks},
  journal={Science},
  year={2018},
  volume={361},
  pages={1246 - 1249}
}
The enigmatic Ediacara biota (571 million to 541 million years ago) represents the first macroscopic complex organisms in the geological record and may hold the key to our understanding of the origin of animals. [] Key Result Here, we show that lipid biomarkers extracted from organically preserved Ediacaran macrofossils unambiguously clarify their phylogeny. Dickinsonia and its relatives solely produced cholesteroids, a hallmark of animals. Our results make these iconic members of the Ediacara biota the…

Chemical clues to the earliest animal fossils

Steroid biomarkers show that the Ediacaran fossil Dickinsonia was an animal The Ediacara biota are a diverse assemblage of macroscopic body forms that appear in the sedimentary rock record between

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Fossil lipid biomarkers previously thought to be diagnostic of sponges (and thus indicative of animal life) are found to be preserved in unicellular Rhizarian protists, questioning a pre-Cambrian origin of spongees.

Developmental processes in Ediacara macrofossils

This analysis demonstrates that the genetic pathways for multicellularity, axial polarity, musculature, and a nervous system were likely present in some of these early animals, supporting the hypothesis that these evolved independently in disparate bilaterian clades.

Reconsidering the Role of Animals and Protists During the Neoproterozoic-Cambrian Transition

The wide geographic and stratigraphic occurrence and high relative abundance of these biomarkers in Ediacaran and Cambrian sediments suggests an early emergence, and an important ecological role of demosponges over a 100 Myr period during the pivotal Neoproterozoic-Cambrian transition.

The developmental biology of Charnia and the eumetazoan affinity of the Ediacaran rangeomorphs

The development of Charnia masoni is characterized and the affinity of rangeomorphs is established, among the oldest and most enigmatic components of the Ediacaran macrobiota, and homology and rationalize morphogenesis between disparate rangeomorph taxa are found.

Algal origin of sponge sterane biomarkers negates the oldest evidence for animals in the rock record.

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BIOLOGICAL AND ECOLOGICAL INSIGHTS FROM THE PRESERVATIONAL VARIABILITY OF FUNISIA DOROTHEA, EDIACARA MEMBER, SOUTH AUSTRALIA

Abstract: The Ediacara Biota represents a turning point in the evolution of life on Earth, signifying the transition from single celled organisms to complex, community-forming macrobiota. The

Food sources for the Ediacara biota communities

Information is presented on primary producers in the Ediacaran based on biomarker molecules that were extracted from sediments hosting macrofossils and evidence for abundant algal food sources available for these organisms is found.

New holozoans with cellular resolution from the early Ediacaran Weng'an Biota, SW China

Embryo-like fossils from the early Ediacaran Weng'an Biota (SW China, 609 myr ago), widely interpreted as holozoans, potentially provide insights into the early evolutionary development of metazoans

Exceptionally Preserved Cambrian Fossils in the Genomic Era

  • J. Ortega‐Hernández
  • Geography, Environmental Science
    Old Questions and Young Approaches to Animal Evolution
  • 2019
This chapter provides an overview of the significance of exceptionally preserved Cambrian fossils and their contribution towards illuminating the origin of animal body plans.
...

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