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Caitlyn Merzbacheron 9 August 2013
Transcript of Placozoa
Placozoans are invertebrates that are so small that only four different cell types make up their flat, round, and transparent appearance. They are made up of two discrete sides (top and bottom). Cylinder and gland cells make up the bottom and cover cells make up the top. The fourth cell type is located between the two sides and are called fiber cells. Placozoans also have the smallest amount of DNA ever recorded.
Placozoans were first discovered in 1883 clinging on the glass walls of an aquarium in Austria. Since Placozoans are so small, there is no fossils that have been unearthed. In fact, we have only been able to observe Placozoans in labs and not in their natural habitat because of their unique size.
Discovered and Fossils
Placozoa is a eukaryote, part of the Kingdom Animalia and subkingdom Metazoa. It is the simplest animal known to man.
Placozoans have been named the closest living representative to the ancestor of all animals. This means that they are the closest model scientist have to the base of the tree of life.
Socially and economically scientist do not know how Placozoans interact outside of a lab. However, we do know that they reproduce asexually, by binary fission or budding. Some scientist have said sexual reproduction can occur, as well. Placozoans feed by laying on top of their food and digesting the nutrients inside of it. We are not sure what they feed on in nature, but to keep them alive in the lab scientist use chromist and chlorophyte.
Economic and Societal Impact
By: Caitlyn Merzbacher