Phylogenetic, Functional, and Geological Perspectives on Complex Multicellularity
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CitationKnoll, Andrew H., and David Hewitt. 2011. “Phylogenetic, Functional, and Geological Perspectives on Complex Multicellularity.” In The Major Transitions in Evolution Revisited, eds. Brett Calcott and Kim Sterelny: 251–270. doi:10.7551/mitpress/9780262015240.003.0013
AbstractThis chapter develops a subtle model that integrates environmental and internal factors. It describes the phylogenetic distribution of multicellular organisms in general and complex multicellular life in particular, clarifying the important distinction between the two. This chapter shows that the long apparent lag between the appearance of simple multicellularity in eukaryotes and the radiation of groups with complex multicellular organization has an environmental component that can be associated back to the consequences of life with interior and exterior cells. It suggests that the evolutionary transition from unicells to complex multicellular organisms has several steps.
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