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In relation to the Paleozoic era, where do we find the Ediacaran fauna?
Just before the Paleozoic...Very late in the Proterozoic, but before the Cambrian, a number of soft-bodied animals appeared in the oceans.
What are the characteristics of the organisms of the Ediacaran fauna?
This group of organisms are flat with many sections and lay about on the sea floor like carpets. They had no internal structures. They represent their own extinct kingdom.
The period immediately preceding the Cambrian, in which the earliest animal fossils are found.
What is the name of the first super continent?
Rodina - Which is Russian for homeland
In which geological time did this first super-continent exist?
-The Cambrian opened up with break up of Rodinia
Know the order of the time frames in the geological record. Know the different eons, eras and periods.
What was the first life form on land? In which period did it occur?
Algae - Paleozoic (CHECK)
Hadean, Archaean, Proterozoic, Phanerozoic
Paleozoic, Mesozoic, Cenozoic
Cambrian, Ordovician, Silurian, Devonian, Carboniferous (Pennsylvanian, Mississippian), Permian
What was the formation of the continents like at the beginning of the Cambrian? What was the name of the largest land mass?
Most of the landmass joined together in a single land mass called Gondwana.
This facilitated the spread of small, sea-dwelling creatures in the shallow water along continental margins.
A relatively brief time in geologic history when large, hard-bodied forms of animals with most of the major body plans known today appeared in the fossil record. This burst of evolutionary change occurred about 535-525 million years ago.
An explosion of animal diversity from about 542 to 488 million years ago.
All known body plans made appearance in fossil record in a time span of 50 million years.
Estimates of over 100 phyla developed during this period (there are only 30 in existence today).
<1% of Earth's age
Most of the Cambrian creatures are now extinct, and we know about them only from their fossils
What is the Tommotian fauna? What were the characteristics of the animals and at what point in the Cambrian did it exist?
The first organism to have mineralized body parts Appear at the beginning of the Cambrian explosion.
They appear in the rock record full-blown, with considerable diversity and no obvious precursors.
What is the most dominant fossil of the Cambrian period?
Trilobites become the most dominate organism of the Cambrian period.
Why is the Burgess Shale important? What is important about the animals that are preserved in the Burgess shale?
Charles Walcott discovered an outcrop of shale about the length of a city block that contained perhaps the most important fossils ever found
The fossils were from the time when complex life first burst forth on the earth, (The Cambrian Explosion)..
Canadian fossil formation that contains Cambrian soft-bodied organisms as well as organisms with hard parts.
Why did the diversification of species occur so suddenly in the Cambrian period.
-Oxygen levels reached a high enough level for the survival of larger and more energy intensive life forms.
-The evolution of genetic complexity.
-A core set of genes had reached a stage in which evolution could tinker with by adding to them, mixing them , turning them on and off.
-From this tinkering an amazing array of new life forms developed.
what are Hox genes and why are they important?
-a series of genes that control the differentiation of cells and tissues in the embryo
-Hox genes are a group of related genes that determine the basic structure and orientation of an organism (every living organism has hox genes)
-Hox genes are critical for the proper placement of segment structures of animals during early embryonic development (e.g. legs, antennae, and wings in fruit flies or the different vertebrate ribs in humans)
What does the term ontogeny begets phylogeny mean? Why do embryos of different types of animals look the same during early stages of life?
-1. Ontogeny is the study of the development of an embryo through its various developmental stages
2. Phylogeny is the study of the development of a species through time
3. The development of an embryo mimics the development of that species through time
-is a biological hypothesis that in developing from embryo to adult, animals go through stages resembling or representing successive stages in the evolution of their remote ancestors.
What marks the end of the Cambrian explosion?
-Mass extinction of trilobites marks the end of the Cambrian period.
What caused the extinction of trilobites?
i. The extinction seemed to be most sever for species that lived in the warmest waters.
ii. The organisms that radiated out (evolved rapidly) to replace the extinct species were cold water species.
iii. Therefore many geologist infer that there was a sudden cooling . The cool water species were able to withstand.
In what period did fish appear? What new adaptations did fish acquire in the Silurian and Devonian periods? (CHECK)
-(Devonian: Lungs Develop) in the Devonian
-(Silurian: Jaws evolved) from gill arches which are the bony parts between gill slits.
From what previous structure did the jaw form from? (CHECK)
Jaws evolved from gill arches which are the bony parts between gill slits.
-Describe the environment on land during the Carboniferous period?
-What organism dominated the land during this period?
-What new adaptions allowed animals to move away from the water and into the dry deserts.
-During the Carboniferous period, massive forest of huge ferns, towering lycophytic trees and sixty foot horsetails grew
thick over the continents.
-The evolution of the amniotic egg changed the terrestrial ecosystem forever.
Land-based vertebrates no longer had to stay close to ponds to reproduce.
Instead the amniotic egg functioned as a sort of 'portable pond' and could be laid even in the most arid of environments.
Describe the formation of the continents during the Permian period?
What modern animals develop from the mammal like reptiles?
What marks the end of the Permian period?
Permian Extinction: The Great Dying
- The Earth's most severe extinction event, with up to 96 percent of all marine all species all and 70 percent of terrestial vertebrate species becoming extinct; it is the only known mass extinction of insects.
- The main causes of the extinction include large or multiple large crater-forming projectile impacts increased volcanism, and sudden release of Methane from the sea floor; gradual changes include sea-level change, anoxia, increasing aridity, and a shift in ocean circulation driven by climate change
What are the three periods that make up the Mesozoic era? What time period (in years) does the Mesozoic era span? (CHECK)
1. Triassic 2.Jurassic 3.Cretacous
2. 251 to 65.5 million years ago
Following the Permian extinction, which type of animal became the most dominant creature on land?
Immediately after the catastrophe, the squat, short-tailed Lystrosaurus became extremely abundant over the whole world, rapidly occupying vacant niches.
Mammal-like reptiles were the dominant and most important creatures on land.
What caused the extinction of the dinosaurs
K-T Event: Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event.
-The Chicxulub asteroid impact caused a mass extinction that ended life for non-avian dinosaurs..
What are hominids? How do they differ from other primates? (CHECK)
A: Hominids are the biological family of which humans are a member. Informally, they are known as the Great Apes, and include four genera: humans, chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans.
B: Some of the main characteristics by which Humans differ from primates include their unique adaptations to bipedalism (walking on two feet), their large and complex brain, and their development of language.
What characteristics do all primates share? What characteristics separate humans from other primates?
Primates are adapted to a tree dwelling lifestyle. All primates except humans live in tropical or subtropical forest.
Binocular vision; Color vision; Large Brain; Five digits on each limb with keratin fingernails; Tactile pads (grips); Opposable thumb; Long inward closing fingers; collar bone; reduced litter size; live in permanent social settings; bidepalism (walk on two legs)
HUMANS: Some of the main characteristics by which Humans differ from primates include their unique adaptations to bipedalism (walking on two feet), their large and complex brain, and their development of language.
What predictions could be made if humans shared a common ancestor with other primates? (CHECK)
The reason why humans share so many characteristics with other primates is because they share an evolutionary history with them. It is not by accident that humans carry adaptations for living in trees as other primates do. Likewise, our differences from other primates is an indication of where our shared evolutionary history departed from other primates.
Describe the main anatomical differences between apes and humans in their skull
a. Skull/Jaw: Humans have high forehead and no brow ridge
i. In humans, vertebrae and spinal cord attach and enter at the base of the skull. The spinal cord of apes enter at the back of the skull
ii. The human jaw is thinner and curved compared to the longer rectangular shape of apes.
iii. Teeth are smaller especially the canines
Describe the main anatomical differences between apes and humans in their pelvis
b. Pelvis: Humans have wider bowl shaped pelvis.
i. Helps hold and balance the weight of the body in an upright stance.
ii. In Humans the Joints attaching the legs to the pelvis are at the base of the pelvis. This is contrasted to apes which have hind legs attached to the front of the pelvis.
Describe the main anatomical differences between apes and humans in their knee
d. Knee: Bipeds need to be able to extend their knee and hip joints to create a straight leg, thus reducing the amount of muscle power needed to support its weight by using its leg muscles. Apes which lack this adaptation tire very quickly when walking on two feet.
Describe the main anatomical differences between apes and humans in their femur
c. Femur: the human femur had to become angled beneath the pelvis so that our feet could be placed under out centers of gravity as we walked. An ape's unangled femur means it can only waddle when it moves upright.
How could you tell if a primate was bipedal if you only had the skull to look at?
Location of the spinal cord into the skull?
(ARDI) One nearly complete female specimen, plus more than 100 fossils from 36 other members of the same species
• Lived 5.8 to 4.4 million years ago
• Cranial capacity of 325cc
• Lived in woodland habitat
• Ardi walked upright but her feet were well adapted to grasping
Teeth resemble modern human teeth more closely than they do those of a chimpanzee.
(LUCY) 3.7million years ago
• Specimens collected from over 300 individuals
• 3.5' to 4 ' feet tall 50 lbs
• 400 cc cranial capacity
• Bipedal skeleton and footprints
(HANDY MAN) 1.9 million years ago
• 510-660 cc brain
• First to make stone tools.
• Sexual dimorphism (males larger)
• Scavengers and omnivorous
extinct species of primitive hominid with upright stature but small brain
200,000 years ago
• 1200 cc brain capacity
• Used fire and clothes
• Smaller jaw and teeth
• Migrated out of Africa to Europe and Asia
• Mostly hunter gathers
• Sexual dimorphism (males larger)
• Lived in small family groups
From 800,000 years ago to the appearance of modern humans.
• 1200 cc brain capacity.
• Sophisticated hunting techniques including herding big mammals off cliffs.
• Two populations, one in Africa and one in Europe.
• African population evolved into Homo sapiens
• European population evolved into Homo neanderthalensis
125,000 - 35000 years ago
• Very modern looking facial features
• Built stronger and stockier than modern man
• Made advanced tools
• 1512 cc brain
• Able to think in the abstract.
• May have comprehended religion and spiritual maters
• Buried and mourned their dead
• Strong family groups and Hunters
1355 cc brain capacity.
• First to build cilivizations.
• First to domesticate plants and animals.
• First to live in large groups that extend beyond family.
• First to invent politics and wide spread government control
What can we say about the appearance of hominid fossils with regard to their age? Can we see a definite trend?
The pattern of our evolution
has not been simple
A diversity of lineages
There has been a definite and study trend from ape-like characteristics to modern traits
Homo sapiens are the lone survivors
What are vestigial organs? What organs or structures are considered to be vestigial in humans?
a. This is an organ that served a purpose in the distant ancestor of an organism, but is not longer pertinent in the presently existing, recently evolved, organisms.
An example would be the muscles we have that can move our ears a bit. Since human ears cannot be reorientated like some animals can (and presumably our long gone ancestors from million of years ago) then those muscle do not serve much purpose (except for mild entertainment).
b. A vestigial organ is a reduced and rudimentary body structure that is homologous to a fully functional organ in closely related species.
c. Such organs have either lost their function or perform relatively simple, minor, or inessential functions using structures that were clearly designed for other complex purposes.
d. Provides evidence of common descent from an earlier ancestor.
-Coccyx (remnant of tail), wisdom teeth, appendix,
Pyramidalis Muscle, The erector pili
Are chimpanzees genetically closer to gorillas or humans?
Direct genetic sequencing show that human's and chimp's genome are 96% identical.
GULO gene (CHECK)
-Humans and the great apes share a unitary pseudogene of great interest in the scientific community and provides good evidence for evolution. A working example of pseudogene evolution is the gene sequence known as, L-gulonolactone oxidase. Commonly known as the GULO pseudogene or the GULOP gene in humans. The GULO gene is a gene that allows most mammals to create vitamin C on their own. However, humans and the other great apes, cannot create vitamin C on their own. This is because apes and humans have a broken GULO gene. At one point, the GULO gene allowed certain chemical products to be produced that allowed the synthesis of vitamin C, but it has now mutated to the point where it no longer serves the same purpose (Fairbanks, 2007). Not only do apes and humans share the same broken GULO gene, but the GULO pseudogene itself is also broken in the exact same place between humans and chimpanzees. The GULO gene is 98% identical and this is true of most of the genes shared between chimps and humans (Fairbanks, 2007)..
-type of pseudgene that aids in biosynthesis of vitamin C in humans, but in primates exists as a disabled gene (GULOP)
A DNA segment very similar to a real gene but which does not yield a functional product; a gene that has become inactivated in a particular species because of mutation.
If humans and apes come from a common ancestor, why do they have a different number of chromosomes?
a. If these organisms share a common ancestor, that ancestor had either 48 chromosomes (24 pairs) or 46 (23 pairs).
b. Common ancestor had 48 chromosomes (24 pairs) and humans carry a fused chromosome; or ancestor had 23 pairs, and apes carry a split chromosome.
What is a haplogroup?
Haplogroups are major branches on the family tree of Homo Sapiens.
a. Each haplogroup has its own unique genetic idenity.
b. Each haplogroup branch is usually associated with a geographic region.
How do you determine the relative age of haplogroups? (CHECK)
If we take the geographical region
in which each haplotype is located
and we factor in the sequence in
which the haplotypes were formed
we get a historical map of the
migrations of the past.
Which type of nuclear DNA is most useful in determining human heritage and migration patterns? (CHECK)
a. As mtDNA is passed down from one generation to the next, some parts remain almost unchanged, while other parts change greatly. This creates an unbreakable link between generations and it can be of great help in reconstructing our family histories.
From what human population was all others derived? (CHECK)
The most ancient DNA in which all other types can be traced back to are found within African populations.
Why is mitochondrial DNA used to map human migration patterns?
Furthermore, Because mitochondrial DNA is not found in the nucleus like the rest of our genetic material, it is not subject to recombination. That is the genes and nucleotides of mitochondrial DNA do not get mixed up with other strands of DNA. The only changes that occur in mitochondrial DNA come from mutations.
This creates a clear pattern of inheritance — passed down through the maternal line— with no genetic recombination - that eases genealogy research. The drawback to this clarity is that it only provides information about a single maternal line.
Based on molecular genetics, where did the indigenous American Indians migrate from?
The America's were the last to be colonized. They were colonized by groups whose ancestors were from Asia.
Which human populations have Neanderthal DNA incorporated in their genes? (CHECK)
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