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Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 1991 Jun 29;332(1264):185-9.

A molecular analysis of the phylogenetic affinities of Saccoglossus cambrensis Brambell & Cole (Hemichordata).

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  • 1Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, U.K.


Traditional approaches to phylogeny reconstruction have not allowed precise resolution of the evolutionary relationships between the major deuterostome phyla (chordates, hemichordates, echinoderms). Here we report the use of a molecular approach to investigate deuterostome phylogeny. We have used a polymerase chain reaction-based strategy to amplify, clone and sequence parts of the genes coding for 18S ribosomal RNA from Saccoglossus cambrensis (Hemichordata), Arbacia sp. (Echinodermata) and, for comparison, Mytilus edulis (Mollusca). We report the results of phylogenetic reconstructions using these, and homologous sequences from other eukaryotes. The results of our analyses are consistent with the hypothesis that S. cambrensis and vertebrates share a common ancestor not shared by echinoderms.

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