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Decimetre-scale multicellular eukaryotes from the 1.56-billion-year-old Gaoyuzhuang Formation in North China



The Gaoyuzhuang compressions record a modest diversity of macroscopic multicellular eukaryotic organisms that lived in shelf areas of early Mesoproterozoic oceans. Comparisons with living thalloid organisms suggest that these organisms were photosynthetic, although their phylogenetic placement within the Eukarya remains uncertain. The new fossils provide the strongest evidence yet that multicellular eukaryotes with decimetric dimensions and a regular developmental program populated the marine biosphere at least a billion years before the Cambrian Explosion.

See for further details: http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2016/160506/ncomms11500/full/ncomms11500.html

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