Take Two for September 27, 2013

419-million-year-old fish fossil shows origin of modern jawbone

new fish

Brian Choo

The newly described armoured fish showed in this reconstruction lived 419 million years ago but already had the bony jaw seen in modern fish and most other vertebrates.

Old Fish Fossil

Zhu, M. et al. Nature

This detail of the fossil specimen shows armour plates and the upper and lower jaw (center-right).

An old fish is usually a bad thing, but one 419 million-year-old fish is proving to be very helpful. A new fossil that was recently discovered in China might completely change the way scientists understand how humans evolved.

Findings about the fossil were published in the latest edition of the journal Nature. Matt Friedman, lecturer in Paleobiology at the University of Oxford in the UK, joins the show to explain. 

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