06 December 2012

Who was the first to see light 700 million years ago?

Researchers from the National University of Ireland Maynooth and University of Bristol solved the mystery of the origin of vision. The origin of vision started with opsin – light-sensitive proteins – development. Using genomic information from recently discovered sponge Oscarella carmela and Cnidarians, which were claimed to have developed the earliest eyes, they produced a timeline showing that a blind opsin ancestor showed up 700 million years ago which evolved 11 million years later to one that can detect light. Dr. Pisani from University of Bristol said:
"The great relevance of our study is that we traced the earliest origin of vision and we found that it originated only once in animals. This is an astonishing discovery because it implies that our study uncovered, in consequence, how and when vision evolved in humans."
Read the full article for a more detailed explanation from here.

Do you have any other information on the sponge Oscarella carmela? Come be a collaborator or send it to us at sealifebase[at]fin[dot]ph.

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