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← Rare Protozoan from Sludge in Norwegian Lake Does Not Fit On Main Branches of Tree of Life

Charonomicrobium's Avatar Jump to comment 21 by Charonomicrobium

Another example of uninformed reporting, as Richard appropriately points out.

To me, as a bacterial microbiologist, the nastiest, itchiest thorn in the side is the repeated assertion that we know of "no other group of organisms that descend from closer to the roots of the tree of life than this species". (As this statement comes from an associate professor of microbiology, I suspect that it was quoted out of context.)

The 'tree of life' contains not only eukaryotes, such as this beast, but prokaryotes too, and the latter are much more evolutionarily basal than are eukaryotes! In fact, prokaryotes exist in two other domains of life (the largest phylogenetic division established) all their own -- the Bacteria and the Archaea.

The Eukarya constitute a domain that branched from the Archaea, but keep in mind that although the Archaea are the ancestral stock from which the main cell body and chromosomal DNA descended, bacteria contributed a lot in the way of laterally transferred organelles, such as mitochondria, plastids and eukaryotic flagella.

Sun, 29 Apr 2012 12:27:12 UTC | #938132