Jellyfish Appeared Even Before Sponges

A new study found that jelly fish is the oldest of all animals on the Earth. Since a long time, debates are going on which came first sponges or jelly-fish. The most accepted one was sponges because of their simple body as compared with other animals.

A new and detailed study by researchers on genetic analysis showed comb jelly (ctenophore) evolved first. The new results will help scientists to know the evolution of nervous system, digestive tract and other basic organs in animals. This debate started in the year 2008 when the family tree for “earliest” animal pointed comb jellies and not the sponges. Since then journals were published with conflicting results.

In the study they focused only on those genes which are present in all animals. The technique was to analyze gene sequences from different organisms. Then they figured out to whom these gene sequences identify as their close relatives. The researchers studied thousands of genes in animals to know which support whom to be the first animal. The new study revealed that comb jelly had more genes than sponges. Thus, supporting the fact that “first to diverge” specie was comb jellies.



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