Tuesday, March 10, 2009
A very used brain, or at least its fossil, is now available. A fish that died in what is now Kansas 300 MYA left scientists a gift. Soft tissue fossils in general are rare, brain fossils even rarer, and this one is the oldest brain fossil known. One of the discoverers, John Maisey, explained its significance this way: "Now that we know that brains might be preserved in such ancient fossils, we can start looking for others. We are limited in information about early vertebrate brains, and the evolution of the brain lies at the core of vertebrate history."