500 million-year-old, bug-like fossils have stunningly preserved nervous systems

Two tiny fossils, each smaller than an aspirin pill, contain fossilized nerve tissue from 508 million years ago. The bug-like Cambrian creatures could help scientists piece together the evolutionary history of modern-day spiders and scorpions.

Still, it’s not clear exactly where these fossils — both specimens of the species Mollisonia symmetrica — fit on the arthropod evolutionary tree, said Nicholas Strausfeld, a regents professor in the Department of Neuroscience at the University of Arizona, who was not involved in the study.

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