Science may have just made one of the world’s biggest breakthroughs with one of the smallest creatures ever discovered.
A new study conducted by an international team of academics has found a microscopic bag-like creature that could be human’s oldest known ancestor. Found from microfossils in China, the creature known as Saccorhytus lived around 540 million years ago. Scientists believe it belonged to a large biological category with subgroups that include vertebrates.
If this is correct than scientists say these tiny creatures “may represent the primitive beginnings of a very diverse range of species, including ourselves.” Researchers did find one big difference while examining the perfectly preserved specimen, they couldn’t find any evidence of an anus. Professor Simon Conway Morris of the University of Cambridge said of the irregularity, “any waste material would simply have been taken out back through the mouth.”
But, despite the amazing link to our first known ancestors, they bare little resemblance to anything walking the Earth today.