Trichoplax and the origin of animal complexity

Published on March 31, 2016   38 min

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Other Talks in the Series: Evolutionary Physiology

DR. BERND SCHIERWATER: My name is Bernd Schierwater. And I'd like to introduce you to my favorite animal, Trichoplax, today. Trichoplax is a very exciting animal, as I will show you during this lecture. And the title of the lecture is "Trichoplax and the Origin of Animal Complexity."
Basically, I have only main message. But this message is quite simple. All I have to say is in evolution, complex patterns usually evolve from more basic patterns. And of course, there are other opinions. But no matter what politicians or religions tell us, I think in the normal case, we should stick with this method that complexity evolves from basic patterns.
So I have a simple example here. And the example is mobile phone evolution. And I think we have good evidence that mobile phone evolution went from big and simple to smaller, and even smaller, and even more complex. But the good proof is easy to obtain simply because mobile phone evolution occurred within the lifetime of a human being.
In evolution is a little more complicated. But the principle is the same just that you don't have direct evidence, we cannot observe it in lifetime, while we depend on indirect evidence. But nonetheless, I make the claim that even in animal evolution, everything started with elementary bauplans and very simple. And from there, we went from Trichoplax all the way down there, for example, through cnidarians to bilaterians. And this is the point I'm going to Illustrate. Actually, I am going to enter the lecture with an idea how we can transform the little Trichoplax down at the very bottom into another bauplan much more complex like the two shown here.

Trichoplax and the origin of animal complexity

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