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Neopilina is a mollusc, the only surviving genus of monoplacophora.[1] Some molecular results show that they fall within the polyplacophora clade,[2] although these have been called into question.[3] Fossil and morphological data show that they are rather derived and bear very little resemblance to an 'ancestral mollusc'.[1]

The monoplacophora were well-known as a fossil group from the Cambrian to the Devonian. They were thought to be long extinct. One species was dredged up from the Pacific Ocean off Mexico in 1952. It was found to be a Monoplacophoran, and given the genus of Neopilina.[4] This was one of the most remarkable modern discoveries of a 'living fossil', and a Lazarus taxon.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Peters, Dieter Stefan 2000. Organisms, genes and evolution: evolutionary theory at the crossroads. Proceedings of the 7th International Senckenberg Conference. Franz Steiner Verlag. ISBN 3-515-07659-X, 9783515076593
  2. Giribet, Gonzalo et al 2006. Evidence for a clade composed of molluscs with serially repeated structures: Monoplacophorans are related to chitons. PNAS 103, 7723–7728. [1]
  3. Wägele, J Wolfgang; Letsch, Harald; Klussmann-Kolb, Annette; Mayer, Christoph; Misof, Bernhard; Wägele, Heike (1990). "Phylogenetic support values are not necessarily informative: the case of the Serialia hypothesis (a mollusk phylogeny)". Frontiers in Zoology. 6 (12): 12. doi:10.1186/1742-9994-6-12. PMC 2710323. PMID 19555513.
  4. Lemche, Henning 1957. Nature 179, 413–416.