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Steroid biomarkers provide evidence for a rapid rise of marine planktonic algae between 659 and 645 million years ago, establishing more efficient energy transfers and driving ecosystems towards larger and increasingly complex organisms.
Maiopatagium, a haramiyid from the Jurassic Tiaojishan Formation (around 160 million years ago) of China was specialised for gliding with a patagium (wing membrane) and a fused wishbone, reminiscent of that of birds.
The fossil of a gliding mammal from the Tiaojishan Formation of China displays many unique features of its ears, teeth and tooth-replacement pattern, illustrating the great diversity of stem mammals living in the Jurassic period.
Fossil evidence is scarce for early stages of evolution in the ape family tree at the time before apes and the ancestors of humans diverged. A 13-million-year-old skull now offers insights into ape development at that time. See Article p.169