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Abstract Detail


Spiegel, Frederick W. [1].

Rethinking the origin of Eukaryotes.

As biologists interested in the macroevolution of eukaryotes come closer to resolving the Eukaryote Tree of Life (EToL), it is time to start to question some of the dogma that we have been complacent enough to accept almost without question.  A serious flaw in some of our reasoning stems from our all too pervasive willingness to treat what is true for Metazoa as somehow generally true for biology.  Even if we stipulate that the modern phyla of metazoans had a marine origin, it does not necessarily follow that the old saw, "All life came from the sea," has any general validity.  With respect to eukaryotes, in general, I suspect that they may never have "invaded the land."  They may always have been there.  I will present several reasons why we should consider the hypothesis that eukaryotes had a terrestrial, rather than an aquatic origin.  This hypothesis is consistent with any of the presently proposed roots for EToL.  Should this hypothesis ultimately be supported, it will have great impact on such matters as the age of major eukaryotic lineages, the question of what components of modern terrestrial biotas are derived contiuously from descendants of terrestrial ancestors, etc.  These are questions of importance both to mycologists and botanists.

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1 - University of Arkansas, Department of Biological Sciences, Science and Engineering 601, 1 University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR, 72701, USA

Origin of Eukaryotes.

Presentation Type: Offered Paper - Paper
Session: 10
Location: Auditorium/Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center
Date: Tuesday, June 10th, 2014
Time: 11:15 AM
Number: 10004
Abstract ID:65
Candidate for Awards:None

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