Navigation Links
Great White shark evolution debate involves WSU Lake Campus geology professor

A significant debate is currently underway in the scientific community over the evolution of the Great White shark, and Chuck Ciampaglio, Ph.D., an assistant professor of geology at the Wright State University Lake Campus, is right in the middle of it.

The issue is if the Great White, one of the most feared predators of the sea, evolved from the huge prehistoric megladon shark or if its ancestry rests with the mako shark.

"Most scientists would probably say the Great Whites evolved from the megladon line, which existed from two million to twenty million years ago. They were huge sharks, approximately the length of a Greyhound bus and possessing teeth that were up to six inches long," explains Ciampaglio. "However, our research, which is based on analyzing fossils of several hundred shark teeth, shows that the Great White shares more similarities with the mako shark." He added that because sharks regularly replace their teeth, it is relatively easy to obtain tooth samples through fossil field work along the Atlantic seaboard.

Ciampaglio acknowledges that people seem to have a fascination with sharks. "The general public seems to like sharks, and maybe this is because they bring out the fears of our childhood, when they were perceived as scary monsters," he explained.

His interest in sharks is apparent when entering his office. The door and walls have pictures of shark teeth, and there are posted references to fossils and a geological time table.

The research scientist makes imprints of the teeth, then digitizes the picture to establish grids of different combinations that are analyzed by a sophisticated computer program. He even uses an electron microscope to view different serration designs of shark teeth.

"Our analysis of their teeth shows that Great White and mako sharks have very similar tooth growth trajectories, while those of the great white and megladon are not similar. Analysis of both the root and entire tooth also shows a remarkable similarity in all four tooth positions under study for both the Great White and mako shark. Serration densities possess a strong similarity between the Great White and makos, where the serration densities between the Great White and megladon exhibit sharp differences. In summary, our morphological (form and structure) evidence strongly supports the theory that the Great White is descended from the prehistoric mako group."

Ciampaglio said the Great White sharks, which can reach a size of nearly 25 feet and possess two-inch teeth, have been a major research subject of his for the past four years. He holds a doctorate from Duke in paleontology, the study of prehistoric life forms. His academic background also includes master's degrees in zoology and geology and a bachelor's degree in physics and chemistry. "My work looks at large scale changes of life over time and how things like mass extinction affect the course of life," he said.

Ciampaglio discussed his shark research findings at recent Geological Society of America meetings in Mississippi and Colorado. A scholarly journal article on the subject is pending.

The geologist joined the Lake Campus faculty two years ago, and one of the reasons he selected Wright State was the extensive opportunity for fossil research in this region of Ohio.


'"/>

Source:Wright State University


Related biology news :

1. Aggressive aquatic species invading Great Lakes
2. Low oxygen likely made Great Dying worse, greatly delayed recovery
3. HIV Therapy Greatly Extends Life of Key T Cells, Scientists Find
4. Leading lampreys to slaughter: Pheromone for scourge of Great Lakes identified
5. Great (taste) expectations: Study shows brain anticipates taste, shifts gears
6. UNH researcher restoring oyster reefs to Great Bay
7. CSIRO imagery shows Outer Great Barrier Reef at risk from river plumes
8. National Academies advisory: Invasive aquatic species in the Great Lakes
9. White blood cell waste disposal system plays critical regulatory role
10. White Blood Cell Waste Disposal System Plays Critical Regulatory Role
11. White blood cells of cancer-resistant mice overwhelm natural defenses of cancer cells
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/6/2017)... , March 6, 2017 ... sales technology, today announced Predictive Sales Coach TM ... infusing actionable sales intelligence into Salesforce. This unique ... enable their sales organizations with deep knowledge of ... allow for intelligent engagement. Predictive Sales Coach extends ...
(Date:3/2/2017)... 2, 2017 Summary This report ... Merck KGaA and its partnering interests and activities since ... Description The Partnering Deals and Alliance since 2010 ... of one of the world,s leading life sciences companies. ... purchase to ensure inclusion of the most up to ...
(Date:3/2/2017)... Australian stem cell and regenerative medicine company, ... an agreement with the Monash Lung Biology Network, a ... and Department of Pharmacology at Monash University, ... to support the use of Cymerus™ mesenchymal stem cells ... Asthma is a chronic, long term lung condition recognised ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/22/2017)... York , March 22, 2017 ... largely fragmented, states a research report by Transparency Market ... Pfizer Inc., Amgen Inc., and AbbVie Inc., accounted for ... 2015. The prominent players in this market are focusing ... their product portfolio, which is likely to lead to ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... ... ... Premier executive recruitment firm, Slone Partners, is proud to have been named a Top ... Hunt Scanlon Media is one of the most respected life science publications in the ... sector. , “It is a great honor for Slone Partners to be part of ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... , ... March 21, 2017 , ... The Conference Forum ... (CMO Summit) to be held on May 10-11, 2017, at the Colonnade Hotel in ... specifically for Chief Medical Officer peer-to-peer learning, benchmarking and support. , “The Chief Medical ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... and PETACH TIKVAH, Israel , March ... a leading developer of adult stem cell technologies for ... Chief Executive Officer, will provide an update on new ... nd Annual Neuroscience Biopartnering and Investment Forum, being ... York Academy of Sciences. ...
Breaking Biology Technology: