Sinking teeth into the evolutionary origin of our skeleton

Did our skeletons evolve for protection or for violence? The earliest vestiges of our skeleton are encountered in 500 million-year-old fossil fishes, some of which were armor-plated filter feeders, while others were naked ...

Scientist describes toothy microfossils

They had rows of sharp, interlocking conical teeth that, while not affixed to a jaw like we know, would rake prey into their mouths kind of like the creature in the movie "Alien."

Ups and downs of biodiversity after mass extinction

The climate after the largest mass extinction so far 252 million years ago was cool, later very warm and then cool again. Thanks to the cooler temperatures, the diversity of marine fauna ballooned, as paleontologists from ...

The first predators and their self-repairing teeth

The earliest predators appeared on Earth 480 million years ago—and they even had teeth capable of repairing themselves. A team of palaeontologists led by Bryan Shirley and Madleen Grohganz from the Chair for Palaeoenviromental ...

The peculiar feeding mechanism of the first vertebrates

A fang-like tooth on double upper lips, spiny teeth on the tongue and a pulley-like mechanism to move the tongue backwards and forwards -- this bizarre bite belongs to a conodont and, thanks to fresh fossil finds, has now ...