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C R Biol. 2009 Feb-Mar;332(2-3):140-8. doi: 10.1016/j.crvi.2008.10.007. Epub 2008 Nov 29.

Progress in systematics: from Siboglinidae to Pogonophora and Vestimentifera and back to Siboglinidae.

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  • 1Department of Marine Ecology, Tjärnö, University of Gothenburg, 45296 Strömstad, Sweden.


We review the taxonomic history of pogonophores (frenulates and vestimentiferans), from the species in first described 1914 to the recently described bone-eating worm Osedax. Previous systematists have referred both groups to the rank of phylum, and the animals have been treated as deuterostomes with a dorsal nerve cord. Further knowledge on their embryology, the discovery of the previously overlooked posterior, segmented part provided with chaetae, and access to molecular data, have completely changed earlier views on their affinities. They are now referred to as a single family of polychaete annelids, Siboglinidae.

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