Researchers make a major cavefish discovery in Thailand

March 24, 2016
Speaking of the unique anatomical structures seen in the cavefish, Cryptotora thamicola, NJIT's Brooke Flammang says, "It possesses morphological features that have previously only been attributed to tetrapods. The pelvis and vertebral column of this fish allow it to support its body weight against gravity and provide large sites for muscle attachment for walking." With respect to evolutionary significance, she adds, "This research gives us insight into the plasticity of the fish body plan and the convergent morphological features that were seen in the evolution of tetrapods." Credit: NJIT

Researchers from New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) have identified unique anatomical features in a species of blind, walking cavefish in Thailand that enable the fish to walk and climb waterfalls in a manner comparable to tetrapods, or four-footed mammals and amphibians. The discovery of this capability, not seen in any other living fishes, also has implications for understanding how the anatomy that all species need to walk on land evolved after the transition from finned to limbed appendages in the Devonian period, which began some 420 million years ago.

This research is reported in a March 24 Scientific Reports article, "Tetrapod-like pelvic girdle in a walking cavefish," by Brooke E. Flammang, Daphne Soares, Julie Markiewicz and Apinun Suvarnaraksha. Flammang and Soares, assistant professors in the NJIT Department of Biological Sciences, were assisted with the research by Markiewicz, an NJIT post-baccalaureate research volunteer in the Flammang lab at the university. Investigator Suvarnaraksha is a member of the Faculty of Fisheries Technology and Aquatic Resources of Maejo University in Thailand.

Speaking of the unique anatomical structures seen in the , Cryptotora thamicola, Flammang says, "It possesses morphological features that have previously only been attributed to tetrapods. The pelvis and of this allow it to support its body weight against gravity and provide large sites for muscle attachment for ." With respect to evolutionary significance, she adds, "This research gives us insight into the plasticity of the fish body plan and the convergent morphological features that were seen in the evolution of tetrapods."

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Explore further: Evolutionary leap from fins to legs was surprisingly simple

More information: Brooke E. Flammang et al. Tetrapod-like pelvic girdle in a walking cavefish, Scientific Reports (2016). DOI: 10.1038/srep23711

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julianpenrod
1.3 / 5 (12) Mar 24, 2016
Which brings up an important objection to "evolution". Why would animals in pellucid environments have no color and no eyes. The doggerel answer is that they don't need them, therefore, "evolution" took them away. But that's not how "evolution" works. It provides survival advantage, we are told. But, in an environment without light, how can color be a disadvantage? Without light, something can be any number of colors and still not be seen. In the same way, why would having eyes be a disadvantage? Why would not having eyes be an advantage? Some try to say that color and eyes take away nutrients. But the fish when they supposedly entered the environment were already fit and healthy with colors and eyes. And, if they lasted long enough to "evolution's" slow pace, then the food was enough to keep them healthy a long time, even with color and eyes.
Guy_Underbridge
4.5 / 5 (17) Mar 24, 2016
why would having eyes be a disadvantage?
You've only got x number of sensory inputs to the brain. If they're not used, then it's a complete waste of energy to grow and maintain that system (eyes), especially when those sensory inputs to the brain could be used elsewhere to give a better advantage to finding food and locating a mate. Examples abound anywhere you look in nature (if you're interested in seeing it).
if they lasted long enough to "evolution's" slow pace, then the food was enough to keep them healthy a long time
yet for some reason, those that eventually lost the eyes are the ones that exist today... Hmmm...
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (13) Mar 24, 2016
why would having eyes be a disadvantage?
You've only got x number of sensory inputs to the brain. If they're not used, then it's a complete waste of energy to grow and maintain that system (eyes), especially when those sensory inputs to the brain could be used elsewhere to give a better advantage to finding food and locating a mate. Examples abound anywhere you look in nature (if you're interested in seeing it).

Dead on with the energy conservation perspective.
SciTechdude
4.8 / 5 (10) Mar 24, 2016
These fish still have the genes for eyes, they are just no longer expressed. The energy requires to run an optical nervous system was not required, so their brains re-wired over time like a blind person's does, and their other senses became stronger. Science is now showing that you can pass on new DNA information in as little as a single generation, so it probably only took a couple generations of these fish living in the caves to lose their fully developed eyes and gain more dedicated swimming or smelling sense. If you took those same fish and exposed them to "surface life", assuming they weren't eaten immediately, in a few generations they would have functional eyes again.
Thirteenth Doctor
4.6 / 5 (10) Mar 24, 2016
Why would not having eyes be an advantage?


There are quite a few species of animals that have eyes that aren't even used at all. They literally have no need of them. Therefore it presents no advantage or disadvantage. In those species, eyes persist but just arent used. In this particular species (in the article), eyes were a disadvantage so it will be interesting to observe them for a time to maybe see what selective pressures were encountered to not have eyes at all.

Also, there is really good evidence that eyes have evolved independently among multiple different species (convergent evolution) which says to me that in most environments eyes, no matter what spectrum is seen, are a really good advantage.
Thirteenth Doctor
4.6 / 5 (11) Mar 24, 2016
And, if they lasted long enough to "evolution's" slow pace,


Not every evolutionary process is slow.....relatively. There was a study done (will have to find it) to where generations of changes to Elephants were calculated in which the size of elephants would be what their ancestors would be (not very large) to elephants today that we encounter in Africa.

The number was somewhere around 12000 generations, which you can see is not very many. Now it makes perfect sense when you check the fossil record and notice there aren't any intermediate Elephants so to speak. I'd have to find that study because it explains it better than I ever will.
neiorah
1.4 / 5 (9) Mar 24, 2016
Most persons make things harder than they have to be. The fish is perfectly designed to live in its environment. If a design works then it is used in more than one species...even if it is changed a bit like the long fingers in a bats wing and the flipper that still has the finger bones in them...No one wants to believe in a higher being bc they do not want the responsibility that goes with it so they say all things came from pond scum and evolved....really?
torbjorn_b_g_larsson
4.7 / 5 (14) Mar 24, 2016
"Which brings up an important objection".

Oy, the old, dumb 'I can show evolution wrong despite a century of scientists having failed' combined with the old, dumb 'if I make erroneous claims and then object to them I have shown wrongness' crackpot gambits. When will they tire?

"Evolution is change in the heritable traits of biological populations over successive generations.
Mechanisms

- Natural selection
- Biased mutation
- Genetic drift
- Genetic hitchhiking
- Gene flow"
[ https://en.wikipe...volution ]

Of these mechanisms, only natural selection "provides survival advantage". If an allele isn't fixed by selection, it will be lost over time.

Silly creationist crackpots, 10 s of google, or just asking, would disperse any confusion among them or their intended readers. What survival advantage provides being a creationist on the internet? None, zip, zero.
torbjorn_b_g_larsson
5 / 5 (14) Mar 24, 2016
But we can note the creationist flailing on this topic especially, since it shows how easy the tetrapod transition between ocean and land was.

Yet another creationist canard has died hard. Very hard,
julianpenrod
1.4 / 5 (9) Mar 24, 2016
To begin with, I already discussed the ":energy" matter. The fish when they first entered the environment had eyes, but were able to find food and even procreate. And they were able to get enough energy for all the many, many generations needed to produce the eyeless fish! There was never a problem with getting the energy for the ancestors or else they wouldn't have been around to "evolve"!
And all "evolution" is a lie. No one has any universally legitimate proof, placed tangibly in "rank and file" hands that "fossils" used to demonstrate "evolution" are not resin casts. The gullible and the craven are told what to believe and they promote it. Rememebr, if an animal with a mutation that makes it a separate species, unable to mate successfully with its parents' kind, is born, where will it find another to mate with? Will the same mutation randomly occur in other animals at the same time?
Tektrix
4.7 / 5 (12) Mar 24, 2016
Most persons make things harder than they have to be. . . No one wants to believe in a higher being bc they do not want the responsibility that goes with it . . .


Your disagreeable levels of presumption arise from your aversion to complex thought. Also, your martyr complex is showing.
barakn
4.1 / 5 (13) Mar 24, 2016
And all "evolution" is a lie. No one has any universally legitimate proof, placed tangibly in "rank and file" hands that "fossils" used to demonstrate "evolution" are not resin casts. -julianpenrod

I was going to suggest you go out and find your own fossils, but then I realized the cognitive dissonance would make your head explode.
obama_socks
1 / 5 (6) Mar 24, 2016
Most persons make things harder than they have to be. The fish is perfectly designed to live in its environment. If a design works then it is used in more than one species...even if it is changed a bit like the long fingers in a bats wing and the flipper that still has the finger bones in them...No one wants to believe in a higher being bc they do not want the responsibility that goes with it so they say all things came from pond scum and evolved....really?
- neiorah
I have to take issue with your opinion of "no one wants to believe in a higher being". Only the most obtuse and willfully blind would have difficulty in believing in a Creator while witnessing the amazing varieties of life forms in and on the Earth. Those unbelievers are unimportant in the scheme of terrestrial existence, so why be concerned about them?
The design is the first objective. But evolution only occurs if the design parameters change along with natural circumstances. Both are important. (cont'd)
obama_socks
1 / 5 (5) Mar 24, 2016
(cont'd)
If you don't believe that the Creator has allowed, and still allows the evolutionary process as a progressive and positive means for the survival of the fittest, then you will have placed yourself within the category of the unbelievers and atheists who criticize you for your belief in the Creator. One faction believes in the Creator, but not in evolution; and the other faction believe in evolution, but not in a Creator. But both factions are actually made of the same "cloth", so to speak.
The problem lies in the teachings of the Judeo-Christian doctrines that don't allow for changes to happen AFTER the Creation. This thought process leads to stagnation and undermines that concept of a Creator who has given life from Himself to the first life forms and then expected them to flourish and change whenever that change was needed to survive.
You need to understand it from the Creator's point of view. Without evolution, ALL life forms could never have progressed.
obama_socks
1.6 / 5 (7) Mar 24, 2016

And all "evolution" is a lie. No one has any universally legitimate proof, placed tangibly in "rank and file" hands that "fossils" used to demonstrate "evolution" are not resin casts. The gullible and the craven are told what to believe and they promote it. Rememebr, if an animal with a mutation that makes it a separate species, unable to mate successfully with its parents' kind, is born, where will it find another to mate with? Will the same mutation randomly occur in other animals at the same time?
- julianpenrod
julian...evolution is a truly dynamic system that was allowed by the Creator as part of His Grand Experiment. Think of the Creator as the Ultimate Scientist and Engineer. Every life form HAS TO EVOLVE, or face certain annihilation/extinction. If the fossils were resin casts, then what were the forms used to make those casts? It had to be the actual bones. But they aren't resin, only the remnants of life that was millions of years old. Accept it
obama_socks
1 / 5 (6) Mar 25, 2016
LOL I see that Theghostofotto1923 and its sock puppets are true to its promise to give my comments all ONES. The ratings are meaningless, Otto, but it is YOUR OWN ratings that mean everything to you. It reveals your mental illnesses in the form of Psychopathic behavior and is evidence of your demonic possession. Satan lives in you.
Captain Stumpy
4.6 / 5 (9) Mar 25, 2016
Satan lives in you
@obutthead
so, if someone rates you down because you have no science content and you are preaching religion on a science site, they are filled with satan??

problem is: you have exactly zero evidence for your claims
starting with the existence of your creator - your claim, therefore prove it exists with empirical evidence that can be validated

more to the point: how exactly do you happen to know your deity's "point of view"?
does it appear to you in visions or do you hear voices?
you should watch this
https://www.youtu...-12sSyKI

when are ya gonna provide evidence for any of your claims?
or do we need to "pray" for it all to be revealed?
https://www.youtu...fLJVSdjg
obama_socks
1 / 5 (5) Mar 25, 2016
To begin with, I already discussed the ":energy" matter. The fish when they first entered the environment had eyes, but were able to find food and even procreate. (...)Remember, if an animal with a mutation that makes it a separate species, unable to mate successfully with its parents' kind, is born, where will it find another to mate with? Will the same mutation randomly occur in other animals at the same time?
- julianpenrod
Your first part is true. The fish's ancestors had eyes, but through evolution and the natural process, the eyes were deemed unnecessary by the fish's own physiology.

The second part - it can't find another to mate with like itself. Mules are unable to procreate with another mule OR with any other animal. They are completely barren because it is unnatural for the parents, a horse and a donkey, to mate with each other. When they do, the offspring is the mule and that is the end of that line. There are many unnatural matings.
obama_socks
Mar 25, 2016
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
Guy_Underbridge
4.1 / 5 (13) Mar 25, 2016
There was never a problem with getting the energy for the ancestors or else they wouldn't have been around to "evolve"!
Then why, pray tell, did the eyes atrophy into non existence? Punishment for some sin?

The gullible and the craven are told what to believe and they promote it
I was thinking the exact same thing
Whydening Gyre
4.6 / 5 (10) Mar 25, 2016
.... There are many unnatural matings.

(Ya. Take me and my first wife, for example...)
Actually - all mating is "natural"...
Tektrix
4.6 / 5 (10) Mar 25, 2016
. . . Psychopathic behavior and is evidence of your demonic possession . . .


Your belief compels you to cast aspersions, demean non-believers, and engage in vitriolic ranting . . . a more poignant indictment against your faith is hard to imagine.
Uncle Ira
4.7 / 5 (12) Mar 25, 2016
Satan lives in you


Well if the best satan can do is let one us mere mortals speak for him, it doesn't say much for his super powers. Or the omnipotence of a god that relies on obama-fan-Skippy or penhead-Skippy to spread his message.

Me? I am just a dumb mud goober, but I really do think that god and satan could find a better way to spread their agendas. Choot, if I was god I would have stuck with the miracles. (Why he quit doing those anyway?) Or satan stuck with the magic stuffs. (And him too, the only good magic you see anymore is on the television.) These goofy postums on the interweb can't be that efficient.
Thirteenth Doctor
4.6 / 5 (9) Mar 25, 2016
Or the omnipotence of a god that relies on obama-fan-Skippy or penhead-Skippy to spread his message.


Didnt you hear? God sent ISIS to Brussels to teach President Obama a lesson by blowing up random people. Why? Because that's what God does.....apparently.
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (7) Mar 25, 2016
Most persons make things harder than they have to be.

Actually, it's more those who wish things to be simpler than they are...
The fish is perfectly designed to live in its environment. If a design works then it is used in more than one species...even if it is changed a bit like the long fingers in a bats wing and the flipper that still has the finger bones in them...

Wouldn't it be simpler to just say features adapt to fit the environment? You know - evolving..?
No one wants to believe in a higher being bc they do not want the responsibility that goes with it

Wrongo. inviting a higher being into the equation mitigates responsibility cuz you have someone (or thing) else to blame.
Just following orders, eh?
...so they say all things came from pond scum and evolved....really?

Actually it all began with hydrogen mixing with a variety of other elements generated in supernovas. Really.
julianpenrod
1.8 / 5 (5) Mar 26, 2016
A crucial issue about "evolution" and the acceptance of the presence of God is the point at which soul entered a body and the creature's parents not having a soul. They ask what combination of chemicals necessarily make soul present and what combinations preclude it.
As for the resin casts, you don't need a model from the outside to make a cast. You mold clay and fire it, then use impressions in sand to mold reproductions.
julianpenrod
1.8 / 5 (5) Mar 26, 2016
And, the fact of the matter is that, yes, the first member of a new species, being birthed from what must be a different species, then, might find a member of the previous species to mate with, but the offspring would not "breed true", that is, they may not even be born alive, they may be sterile or, if they do manage to mate, the offspring will have the previous species' genetics and so will not be a new species. This is what I mean when I say a "successful mating". The likelihood of a new species finding an exact genetic replica of themselves in a population is rare to the point of being all but impossible. No one has yet said how a single member with only a single gene difference at best from its parents would become a new species and not, at best, have it single gene become lost and eventually nonexistent in the general population.
julianpenrod
1.8 / 5 (5) Mar 26, 2016
And, I notice, no one has tried to explain how, if cave environments are so nutrient poor, the fish with eyes and colors managed to survive over the "evolutionarily" long periods needed to change! That is a crucial question! If the fish can survive in their previous form long enough for "evolution" to take place, then that form must fit the environment. Maybe only marginally,. But that's all the "evolution" needs not to work! "Evolution" acts only if there is a distinct advantage. But it does not work if the previous form fit its niche. There is no impulse to change if the fish already survives well enough to last the centuries that "evolution" would take!
Captain Stumpy
4.4 / 5 (7) Mar 26, 2016
the acceptance of the presence of God is the point at which soul entered a body and the creature's parents not having a soul
@julie
first give the empirical evidence and validation that a soul exists
the first member of a new species, being birthed from what must be a different species, then, might find a member of the previous species to mate with...they may be sterile
1- see "ring species"
2- you can skip to the 2 min mark if you like - it includes a discussion on ring species
https://www.youtu...ygS7opCA

That is a crucial question!
not really, and it is answered above
perhaps this will help? https://en.wikipe...volution

this link has a LOT of references for evidence
http://www.talkor...aqs.html
obama_socks
1 / 5 (2) Mar 27, 2016
And, I notice, no one has tried to explain how, if cave environments are so nutrient poor, the fish with eyes and colors managed to survive over the "evolutionarily" long periods needed to change! That is a crucial question! If the fish can survive in their previous form long enough for "evolution" to take place, then that form must fit the environment. Maybe only marginally,. But that's all the "evolution" needs not to work! "Evolution" acts only if there is a distinct advantage. But it does not work if the previous form fit its niche. There is no impulse to change if the fish already survives well enough to last the centuries that "evolution" would take!
- julian
Not centuries. Try Millions and some cases 1 -2 Billion years for evolution to change characteristics & traits. Life ADAPTS to the environment, not the other way around. The environment changes, i.e. warming & cooling; drought & flood; darkness, etc.
obama_socks
1 / 5 (2) Mar 27, 2016
(cont'd)
@julianpenrod
The ancestors may have wandered into the niche and were trapped within it. If they still had access to the outside, then they might not have stayed in the cave except to lay their eggs. It's evident that they were unable to gain access to the outside. OTOH, the ancestors could have remained there because it afforded them protection from predators.
I note that the eye sockets remain in the head of the fish. Just the eyes are missing. So they evolved empty eye sockets. There is the possibility that the eyes were infected by an indigenous bacteria or virus that gravitated only to the eyes, and not the rest of the body. In that case, the fish's physiology would have adapted to the bacteria and slowly removed its food source through millions of years.
Phys1
3.4 / 5 (5) Mar 28, 2016
A crucial issue about "evolution" and the acceptance of the presence of God is the point at which soul entered a body and the creature's parents not having a soul.

This is the kind of dangerous nonsense that fools use to legitimate their terrorist actions.
Your claim that those who do not share your insanity have no soul makes you a safety hazard. I hope the FBI is reading along.
Phys1
4 / 5 (4) Mar 28, 2016
@jp
And, the fact of the matter is that, yes, the first member of a new species, being birthed from what must be a different species, then, might find a member of the previous species to mate with, but ..

That line of reasoning sounds rather stupid. How do grown up people come up with stuff like this?

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