A zoologist at the Natural History Museum of Denmark in Copenhagen, Jean Just, discovered sea creatures in the Tasman Sea that cannot be classified into any known major phyla. These invertebrate creatures—now classified as Dendrogramma—are mushroom shaped, multicellular, asymmetrical, and have a gelatinous layer between the inner and the outer body. They seem to have morphological similarities to jellyfish and comb jellies. Dendrogramma are also similar to a small group of 'medusoids,' jellyfish-like creatures, which lived 600 million years ago during the Ediacaran period. Thus, these creatures could be descendants of the Ediacara organisms, which were thought to be extinct over 500 million years ago. Developmental biologists feel such animal lineages can help gather information about ancient mass extinction events and reconstruct the course of evolution.
Read more in Nature.