Our oldest ancestors are warty comb jellies

Saying that our oldest ancestors are warty comb jelliies might not sound too flattering, but it’s an improvement. Until now, our earliest relatives, the first branch in the animal kingdom’s proverbial tree, were thought to be sponges, the sessile and collagen wads.

A paper published this week in the journal Science reports that ctenophores, a phylum of animals that includes a species colloquially known as warty comb jellies, are Earth’s earliest extant animals, making them sister to all other animal kingdom phyla. The findings are a revision to the base of Earth’s animal tree, putting ctenophores where sponges had been.

Read the full, original story: Is your oldest sister a warty comb jelly?

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