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Leptocardii

(Class)

Overview

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A Class in the Kingdom Animalia.

Taxonomy

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The Class Leptocardii is further organized into finer groupings including:

Orders

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Amphioxiformes

The lancelets (from "lancet"), also known as amphioxi, comprise some 22 species of fish-like marine chordates with a global distribution in shallow temperate (as far north as Scotland) and tropical seas, usually found half-buried in sand. They are the modern representatives of the subphylum Cephalochordata, formerly thought to be the sister group of the craniates. In Asia, they are harvested commercially as food for humans and domesticated animals. They are an important object of study in zoology as they provide indications about the origins of the vertebrates. Lancelets serve as an intriguing comparison point for tracing how vertebrates have evolved and adapted. Although lancelets split from vertebrates more than 520 million years ago, their genomes hold clues about evolution, particularly how vertebrates have employed old genes for new functions. They are regarded as similar to the archetypal vertebrate form. [more]

At least 14 species and subspecies belong to the Order Amphioxiformes.

More info about the Order Amphioxiformes may be found here.

Sources

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Last Revised: October 03, 2013
2013/10/03 16:02:43