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Tiny, bag-like fossil creature could be early human ancestor

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posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 01:00 AM
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Tiny, bag-like fossil creature could be early human ancestor
www.cbc.ca...


Smaller than a grain of rice, creature lived 540 million years ago


It's believed that this new species is the most primitive example of a deuterostome, a category in biology that includes many sub-groups, including vertebrates such as ourselves.

"Frankly, it doesn't look like anything very exciting; it looks like a tiny dot, a bit smaller than a grain of rice. But in the electron microscope, it's just eye-popping," Simon Conway Morris, a professor and fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge, who authored the paper, told CBC News.

The fossils, which were exquisitely preserved, were found in limestone — three tonnes of it — that was broken down into very small pieces allowing researchers to study them under electron microscopes.



Saccorhytus — which means "wrinkled bag" — was just about one millimetre in size with an elliptical body and large mouth.

One of the things that deuterostomes share is gill slits, and the researchers found that the Saccorhytus had small conical features believed to be the precursors to gills. That's where excess water — and possibly waste — was expelled. The researchers couldn't find any sign the creature had an anus.

Morris said this discovery doesn't mean they've found our earliest human ancestor, but it is still exciting.


New discoveries of early life make findings like these exciting. Though I am not a biologist by ANY means the theory of evolution is truly amazing to find connections to early ancestors and "where it all began" kind of deal.

However, for those who are still very skeptical on this finding, you could always resort to...



Our Oldest Ancestors Had a Bag-Like Body and a Big Mouth
thewire.in...

“Saccorhytus now gives us remarkable insights into the very first stages of the evolution of a group that led to the fish, and ultimately, to us,” palaeontologist Degan Shu of China’s Northwest University said in a statement provided by the University of Cambridge.

Fossils of about 40 Saccorhytus individuals, including a few superbly preserved specimens, were unearthed in Shaanxi Province in central China and look like minuscule black grains.

Saccorhytus probably lived between individual grains of sediment on the bottom of a shallow sea.

With its large mouth, it probably ate by simply engulfing food particles or smaller creatures whole. The researchers found no evidence that it had an anus, meaning that its waste material may have been expelled out of the mouth. Conway Morris said that process “from our perspective sounds rather unappealing.”

It also boasted small conical structures on its body, which was covered with a thin, flexible skin. These structures may have allowed water it swallowed to escape, possibly the evolutionary forerunner of fish gills.


www.slashgear.com...

edit on 31-1-2017 by Skywatcher2011 because: added note and picture




posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 01:07 AM
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Is there anything to compare this to human life? DNA or otherwise?



posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 01:09 AM
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a reply to: randomtangentsrme

Not yet as this was just announced through physical observations. This creature was fossilized so at this moment I don't think DNA is present for testing. Right now it is just a theory



posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 01:33 AM
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Yeah, star dust and star water are earlier ancestors of humanity, just no DNA.
What EVER



posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 01:42 AM
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Nice find, interested to see more about it develops.
More on deuterostome;


The name deuterostome means "mouth second", and refers to one important developmental feature unique to this group. To understand this feature, a little animal embryology is necessary. In the earliest stages of embryo development, when there are only a few cells and the embryo resembles a tiny globe of cells, a small pucker develops on one side of the embryo. This grows into a pocket, and allows some cells to migrate inside to form an additional layer of cells within the outer layer. At this stage, the embryo is known as a gastrula. In the Protostomia, which is the other major group of the Bilateria, the mouth develops from the edge of this pocket, where the inner and outer layer of cells meet; the anal opening develops later. In the Deuterostomia, the reverse is true; the pocket edge develops into the anus, and the mouth is formed later. Hence the byline at the top of this page: "Your mouth comes second."

Source



posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 01:45 AM
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a reply to: Skywatcher2011

Are standards at ATS slipping at ATS? I should think so if a discovery like this is shared and, until I showed up, has no stars or flags yet people can snipe at you for no reason on political posts and get a whole pile of stars for it. Shame on you ATS.

This wee fella is a real looker, isn't he? Not that these are still around but I for one am glad these are only miniscule, can you imagine how much of a freaky do-dah he would be if he was Human sized???



posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 01:49 AM
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a reply to: djz3ro

I can see a face alright. Must be our ancestor.



posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 01:57 AM
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originally posted by: boozo
a reply to: djz3ro

I can see a face alright. Must be our ancestor.


I thought it was made up at first, until I realised it was an artists impression (which is probably why it looks like a tattie with the mouth of a Lamprey). Do you not think it looks like a face straight out of X-Files?



posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 02:20 AM
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originally posted by: djz3ro

can you imagine how much of a freaky do-dah he would be if he was Human sized???


Maybe...but this is as close as I can think of:




posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 02:26 AM
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Looks related to Cacodemon from the original Doom game.





posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 07:09 AM
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a reply to: Skywatcher2011

Yeah I can see the resemblance. Around the eyes????



posted on Jan, 31 2017 @ 07:31 AM
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Bag like creature - fascinating! (check my avatar pic ;-)

What I did not get from the articles - was it only found in fossil form or is it still around as a living organism? If it s still around, let's test it in outer space.

And hope it survives like the Water Bear (Tardigrade).
That could answer some big questions.

540 million years is just mindbogglingly old.




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