Navigation Links
Animals that seem identical may be completely different species
Date:4/22/2009

Animals that seem identical may belong to completely different species. This is the conclusion of researchers at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, who have used DNA analyses to discover that one of our most common segmented worms is actually two types of worm. The result is one of many suggesting that the variety of species on the earth could be considerably larger than we thought. "We could be talking about a large number of species that have existed undiscovered because they resemble other known species," says Professor Christer Ersus.

The segmented worms that were studied by Christer Ersus, doctoral student Daniel Gustavsson and their American colleague, are identical in appearance. From the very first time that they were described, they have been treated as the same species, and they are also found together in freshwater environments in North America, Sweden and the rest of Europe.

But when the researchers examined the worms using advanced methods for DNA analysis, they discovered that they were in fact two different species. Both species of worm differ in one of the examined genes by 17 percent, which is twice as much as the equivalent difference between humans and chimpanzees.

The research results, which are being published in the journal Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, could have major consequences. For example, the worms are frequently used for laboratory testing around the world, to examine the effects of environmental toxins.

"Different species have different characteristics. If it emerged that these two species differ in terms of their tolerance towards certain toxins, then it could be difficult to make comparisons between different studies," says Christer Ersus.

And as this advanced DNA technology is tested increasingly within various animal groups, it could, according to Christer Ersus, mean that our perception of the earth's biodiversity may need to be revised. "There could be ten times as many species in total, compared with what we previously thought," he says.

The new species of worm has not yet been given a name, since researchers have not yet decided which of the two will keep the old name, Lumbriculus variegatus.


'/>"/>

Contact: Krister Svahn
krister.svahn@science.gu.se
46-073-209-6339
University of Gothenburg
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. The life histories of the earliest land animals
2. Why dont more animals change their sex?
3. Grazing animals help spread plant disease
4. Novel technique for fluorescence tomography of tumors in living animals
5. Details of evolutionary transition from fish to land animals revealed
6. Researchers note differences between people and animals on calorie restriction
7. Gene associated with pair-bonding in animals has similar effects in human males
8. Using networks to map the social lives of animals
9. Big-brained animals evolve faster
10. Closing the gap between fish and land animals
11. Genomics of large marine animals showcased in the biological bulletin
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Animals that seem identical may be completely different species
(Date:2/2/2016)... , Feb. 2, 2016 Technology Enhancements Accelerate ... an analysis of the digital and computed radiography markets ... , and Indonesia (TIM). ... and market size, as well as regional market drivers ... and discusses market penetration and market attractiveness, both for ...
(Date:2/1/2016)...  Wocket® smart wallet ( www.wocketwallet.com ) announces the launch of a ... . Las Vegas , where Joey appeared at ... Las Vegas , where Joey appeared at the Wocket booth ... ad was filmed at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES2016) in ... meet and greet fans. --> --> ...
(Date:1/22/2016)... 22, 2016 ... of the  "Global Behavioral Biometric Market ... --> http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/4lmf2s/global_behavioral ) has announced ... Biometric Market 2016-2020"  report to their ... Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/4lmf2s/global_behavioral ) has announced the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/10/2016)... Miami, FL (PRWEB) , ... February 10, 2016 ... ... leader in regenerative medicine, has announced a new agreement with Singapore-based Global Stem ... qualified physicians from the Philippines, Thailand and Singapore in the latest adipose and ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... LITTLE FALLS, N.J. , Feb. 9, 2016 ... ), a biotechnology company specializing in the development ... the health of damaged tissues and organs, recently ... milestones for the first quarter of 2016. ... Regenicin began the new 2015 fiscal year in ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... Prussia, PA (PRWEB) , ... February 09, 2016 , ... ... Development, Europe. Based in Paris, he will focus on acquiring new accounts and ... being met. , “Fred brings to our European clients more than ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... 9, 2016  DNAtrix, a clinical stage, ... announced that its lead product, DNX-2401, has ... an orphan medicinal product for the treatment ... glioma, strikes approximately 25,000 people a year ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160208/330986LOGO --> http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160208/330986LOGO ...
Breaking Biology Technology: