We collected as much information as possible on new lamin genes and their flanking genes. The number of lamin genes varies from 1 to 4 depending more or less on the phylogenetic position of the species. Strong genome drift is recognised by fewer and unusually placed introns and a change in flanking genes. This applies to the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, the insect Drosophila melanogaster, the urochordate Ciona intestinalis, the annelid Capitella teleta and the planaria Schmidtea mediterranea. In contrast stable genomes show astonishing conservation of the flanking genes. These are identical in the sea anemone Nematostella vectensis and the cephalochordate Branchiostoma floridae lamin B1 gene. Even in the lamin B1 genes from Xenopus tropicalis and man one of the flanking genes is conserved. Finally our analysis forms the basis for a molecular analysis of metazoan phylogeny.