A soft-bodied mollusc with radula from the Middle Cambrian Burgess Shale
Figure 2: Reconstruction of a colony of Odontogriphus omalus grazing on the cyanobacterium Morania (illustration by Marianne Collins © 2006). (453.2Kb)
Figure 3: Evolutionary tree of the molluscs in the context of the Neoproterozoic-Cambrian substrate revolution. (191.6Kb)
Supplementary Figure 2: Reconstruction of different preservational modes of the radula of Odontogriphus omalus. (44.67Kb)
Scheltema, Amelie H.
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Odontogriphus omalus was originally described as a problematic non-biomineralized lophophorate organism. Here we reinterpret Odontogriphus based on 189 new specimens including numerous exceptionally well-preserved individuals from the Burgess Shale collections of the Royal Ontario Museum. This additional material provides compelling evidence that the feeding apparatus in Odontogriphus is a radula of molluscan architecture comprising two primary bipartite tooth rows attached to a radular membrane and showing replacement by posterior addition. Further characters supporting molluscan affinity include a broad foot bordered by numerous ctenidia located in a mantle groove and a stiffened cuticular dorsum. Odontogriphus has a radula similar to Wiwaxia corrugata but lacks a scleritome. We interpret these animals to be members of an early stem-group mollusc lineage that likely originated in the Neoproterozoic Ediacaran Period, providing support for the retention of a biomat-based grazing community from the late Precambrian until at least the Middle Cambrian.
Author Posting. © Nature Publishing Group, 2006. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Nature Publishing Group for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Nature 442 (2006): 159-163, doi:10.1038/nature04894.