Tiny sponge fossil predates the Cambrian explosion

New tools could allow scientists to discover other fossils that significantly predate the start of the Cambrian explosion, according to David Bottjer, a professor at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and co-author of a study announcing the finding of the sponge in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“Fundamental traits in sponges were not suddenly appearing in the Cambrian Period, which is when many think these traits were evolving, but many million years earlier,” Bottjer said. “To reveal these types of findings, you have to use pretty high-tech approaches and work with the best people around the world.”

https://news.usc.edu/83632/tiny-sponge-fossil-predates-the-cambrian-explosion/

18 thoughts on “Tiny sponge fossil predates the Cambrian explosion

  1. Of course this find completely guts Meyer’s idiotic “Darwin’s Doubt” Cambrian claims. Not that his anti-science Creationist horsecrap needed any more rebuttals.

  2. Adapa:
    Of course this find completely guts Meyer’s idiotic “Darwin’s Doubt” Cambrian claims.Not that his anti-science Creationist horsecrap needed any more rebuttals.

    Moar missing intermediates, though.

  3. All of the microfossils were examined by SEM, and well-preserved specimens were scanned at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (Grenoble, France) with high resolution. We used an undulator source, which can deliver a single harmonic X-ray with energy of 17.68 keV, at beamline ID19. The relative monochromaticity of the beam is so good that use of a monochromator was unnecessary.

    Amazing how technology improves over time.

  4. Interesting that the technique seems to require calcium phosphate remains. I strongly suspect that molluscs and annelids were also established during the Ediacaran period, but I don’t know how much, if any calcium phosphate their bodies accumulated.

  5. Adapa,

    I was going to comment, but I realized the anti-intelligent skeptical-atheist horsecrap movement doesn’t need any more rebuttals.

    But snowflakes are sometimes symmetrical, so I guess that means that there is no God.

  6. phoodoo:
    Adapa,
    I was going to comment, but I realized the anti-intelligent skeptical-atheist horsecrap movement doesn’t need any more rebuttals.

    But snowflakes are sometimes symmetrical, so I guess that means that there is no God.

    Cool.

  7. Richardthughes: I was going to comment and I did. You can tell this is true because, look here are the words!

    I was going to comment but after reading the first few posts I figured you guys must be busy doing science and wouldn’t want to be disturbed.

  8. Ever since the exposure of Barry’s “we’re losing badly” mail, some of the ID regulars here have had a hard time focusing it seems.
    It’s a shame because this and the post I made about Meyers claims in Darwins Doubt are interesting subjects I think.

    Despite our differences I think at least one thing that unites all of us is a curiosity about the history of life.

  9. llanitedave:
    Interesting that the technique seems to require calcium phosphate remains.I strongly suspect that molluscs and annelids were also established during the Ediacaran period, but I don’t know how much, if any calcium phosphate their bodies accumulated.

    This fossil is from the Duoshantuo formation, in which all fossils are preserved by phosphate. I believe that it does not rely solely on the phosphate in the original organisms. Wikipedia: Phosphatic fossilization

  10. Rumraket: Ever since the exposure of Barry’s “we’re losing badly” mail, some of the ID regulars here have had a hard time focusing it seems.

    On the contrary, I’ve been very focused. So focused that I’m seeing complaints about how focused I am.

    I was focused on the ethics and wisdom of allowing and yes, even encouraging, the publication of private emails on the site. Then the censorship set in, so I focused on that.

  11. Mung: On the contrary, I’ve been very focused. So focused that I’m seeing complaints about how focused I am.

    I was focused on the ethics and wisdom of allowing and yes, even encouraging, the publication of private emails on the site. Then the censorship set in, so I focused on that.

    You’ve lost focus, this is not the subject of this thread.

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