In this work they have verified that the Mediterranean snails belonging to this group remained isolated since the middle of the Miocene, around 15 Ma ago. This could have caused the diversification of genera. Later, about 6 Ma ago, during the so-called Messinian crisis, the Mediterranean Sea largely dried up by increasing its salinity, which probably acted as a motor for the isolation of populations and subsequent speciation. ” A recent publication from the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM) has explained how a type of complex community of microorganisms could intervene in the early stages of fossil formation. The study is published in Scientific Reports . Explaining how a fossil is formed is, as a rule, a difficult task. To the already complicated task of working with remains that have had to spend millions of years buried before being discovered,

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is added the impossibility of knowing, Malaysia Email List with the necessary certainty, the conditions in which they were buried. Despite these problems, there is a branch of Paleontology, Taphonomy, which tries to know under what circumstances and through what phenomena fossils could be formed. In the Microbial Ecology and Paleontology laboratories of the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM), a series of experiments are being carried out with the aim of explaining whether the microbial mats could be responsible for the formation of some fossils (flies, fish, frogs, some types of plants) exceptionally well preserved. These experiments are also providing new tools to understand and interpret some of the remains that have been found in different sites. In a recent article, published in Scientific Reports, the authors of these experiments confirmed that the

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The presence of microbial mats significantly delays the decomposition of the carcasses of the African dwarf frog Pipidae ( Hymenochirus boettgeri ). As they explain, “the mats quickly cover the bodies in just thirty days, forming a kind of sarcophagus that protects and isolates the frogs from the outside. In this way, the bodies are not dismembered or fragmented and can maintain their integrity. The delay in decomposition inside the sarcophagus allows conservation even at the cellular level, as can be observed by electron microscopy in samples of skin, tendons, muscle and bone marrow ”. According to the authors, these results also connect directly with the fossil record. They point out, for example, that the cuts of the bones of the frogs from the experiments present a series of cells and tissues that surprisingly coincide with those of fossils of adult frogs

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