Where humans split from sharks: Common ancestor comes into focus

Wednesday, June 13, 2012 - 17:31 in Paleontology & Archaeology

The common ancestor of all jawed vertebrates on Earth resembled a shark, according to a new analysis of the braincase of a 290-million-year-old fossil fish that has long puzzled paleontologists. Research on Acanthodes bronni, a Paleozoic fish, sheds light on the evolution of the earliest jawed vertebrates and offers a glimpse of the last common ancestor before the split between the earliest sharks and the first bony fishes -- the lineage that would eventually include human beings.

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