Tree of Life News

A new tree of life allows a closer look at the origin of species

A global evolutionary map reveals new insights into our last common ancestor

In 1870 the German scientist Ernst Haeckel mapped the evolutionary relationships of plants and animals in the first 'tree of life'. Since then scientists have continuously redrawn and expanded the tree adding microorganisms and using modern molecular data, yet, many parts of the tree have remained unclear. Now a group at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg has developed a computational method that resolves many of the open questions and produced what is likely the most accurate tree ever. The study, which appears in the current issue of the journal Science, gives some intriguing insights into the origins of bacteria and the last common universal ancestor of all life on earth today.

'Tis a very cool brief from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory. Tip o' the hat to Coturnix, who seems to be link festing the past couple of days. Merci bro!


  1. Wow. That "tree" is fascinating ... I think. It's a bit over my head, but I think I get the gist of it. I have a hard time when things get too small to actually see.

  2. I'm like that with Math Anita. I tend to lose interest in the whole equation if the separate components don' ... umm

    What was I talkin' about?

    LOL! But, alas, it's true. {sigh}



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