Little, CTS and Vrijenhoek, RC (2003) Are hydrothermal vent animals living fossils? Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 18 (11). 582 - 588 . ISSN 0169-5347Full text available as:
Since their discovery in 1977, hydrothermal vent communities have provided many surprises about life in the deep sea and in extreme environments. It has been suggested that vent communities contain many living fossils and that deep-sea chemosynthetic environments, such as vents and hydrocarbon seeps, are buffered from extinction events that affect the photic zone. This hypothesis is based on the dependence of these deep-sea communities on a geochemical energy source and the considerable levels of taxonomic novelty that they contain. Here, we review recent evidence from the fossil record of hydrothermal vents and hydrocarbon seeps, together with molecular phylogenies of several dominant hydrothermal vent and seep taxa. In spite of significant discrepancies between the fossil record and molecular divergence estimates for several important taxa, we show that most modern vent animal groups arose relatively recently and that the taxonomic composition of vent communities has changed considerably through time.
|Academic Units:||The University of Leeds > Faculty of Environment (Leeds) > School of Earth and Environment (Leeds) > Institute of Geological Sciences (Leeds)|
|Depositing User:||Crispin T.S. Little|
|Date Deposited:||22 Mar 2005|
|Last Modified:||08 Feb 2013 17:32|
|Publisher:||Elsevier Science Ltd.|
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