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Animal EvolutionInterrelationships of the Living Phyla$
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Claus Nielsen

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199606023

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199606023.001.0001

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Phylum Micrognathozoa

Phylum Micrognathozoa

Chapter:
(p.184) 33 Phylum Micrognathozoa
Source:
Animal Evolution
Author(s):

Claus Nielsen

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199606023.003.0033

The phylum Micrognathozoa consists of only one species, the microscopic Limnognathia maerski, which was discovered in a cold spring at Disko Island in Greenland. Limnognathia is a cylindrical worm with a rounded head and abdomen, and a mid-body characterised by transverse wrinkles. The species has cellular tissues, with paired ovaries that probably consist of naked oocytes. The presence of the unusual internal skeletal lamina suggests that it is a sister group of the rotifers, while the complicated jaws are very similar to those of both gnathostomulids and the free-living rotifers. These observations strongly support Limnognathia’s position within the Gnathifera.

Keywords:   rotifers, Micrognathozoa, Limnognathia maerski, gnathostomulids, Gnathifera, jaws, internal skeletal lamina

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