550 million years ago humans have striking similarities to exotic animals

From what little we know about them, it seems very different. Mysterious creatures living in the ocean half a billion years ago – headless, messy things, mostly alien to us in all respects.

Except they weren’t, new research suggests. In fact, biodata, an ancient marine life-form inhabiting the earth from i7070 to 953 million years ago, shared numerous genetic similarities with modern metazones (multicellular animals), including humans, scientists say.

It’s not that there’s a border similarity to discomfort or anything.

“None of them had heads or skeletons,” explains Mary Drozer, a paleobiologist at the University of California, Riverside.

“Many of them looked like three-dimensional bathmates on the sea floor, round discs that stuck.”

The drawer has a specialty in the investigation of strange creatures from the distant past of the earth.

A year ago, she helped with a study that identified one such adiacaran: Icaria variootia, A strange, dull blob about the size of a grain of rice, which may be the earliest ancestor of all animals with bilateral symmetrical bodies.

However, not all adiakars today have such a close relationship with animals.

There are more than 40 recognized species of this period – the most famous being the Ovoid Dickensonia, And another name is named after President Obama – and determining where their fossilized forms should sit on the tree of life is not always easy.

“These animals are so exotic and so different, it’s hard to assign them to the modern category of living things just by looking at them,” says Drozer. “And it’s not that we can do their DNA – we can’t.”

Without being able to make a first-hand analysis of the genetic data of these organisms, researchers will have to estimate what they can do with the traces left behind by these organisms. Thankfully, it can reveal a bit of an ancient impression.

In a new study co-authored by Drozer and led by Scott Evans, the first author and paleontologist at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, the researchers looked at four representatives of the Adiacaran biota: Dickensonia, Icaria, Like a snail Kimberla, And bloom in the hemisphere Tribrechidium.

Based on the observations of the fossils and what we can think of how we were able to move the bodies of animals, sustain ourselves and live their lives on the ancient seabed in general, the researchers suggested that the animals possibly contained a major undertaking of the nervous system. And regulated by the same type of genetic regulatory elements used by living animals even today, including humans.

“This analysis showed that the genetic pathways for multicellularity, axial polarity, musculoskeletal and nervous system were possibly in some such animals,” the authors write.

“Together these traits help to better control the phylogenetic status of some key adiakara taxa and inform our views on early metazoan evolution.”

In particular, in a new study, the team outlines a wide range of genes that include multicellularity, immunity, nerves, apoptosis (programmed cell death), axial patterning (which distinguishes sides of the body, such as front or back and left or right). , And more.

Much remains to be learned about these truly ancient creatures, the biology that unites us over millions of years shows that they may not be as strange as they seem.

“We can say that these genes have been working on something that has been extinct for half a billion years, which is interesting to me,” says Evans.

These findings are reported Proceedings of the Royal Society b.