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Scan of placoderm eye casing
(Credit: Image courtesy of Australian National University)

Dr Gavin Young from the Department of Earth and Marine Sciences at ANU has analysed fossilised remains of 400-million-year-old Devonian placoderms – jawed ancestors of modern fish whose bodies were protected by thick bony armour.

The palaeobiologist discovered that unlike all living vertebrate animals – which includes everything from the jawless lamprey fish to humans – placoderms had a different arrangement of muscles and nerves supporting the eyeball – evidence of an ‘intermediate stage’ between the evolution of jawless and jawed vertebrates.

Nice to read of another addition to our understanding of eye evolution.