The oldest stylophoran echinoderm: a new Ceratocystis from the Middle Cambrian of Germany

Imran Alexander Rahman, Samuel Zamora, Gerd Geyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


A new stylophoran (Ceratocystis prosthiakida sp. nov.) from the early Middle Cambrian of the Franconian Forest (north-east Bavaria, Germany) is described with the aid of computed tomography, a powerful means of visualizing fossil anatomy. Investigation in this manner enabled previously inaccessible, buried parts of the fossil to be imaged and studied. In addition, a procedure for digitally correcting plate articulations was implemented. Ceratocystis prosthiakida sp. nov. possesses a thin anterior right spine which clearly differentiates it from other species of Ceratocystis. Similar to other Ceratocystis species, C. prosthiakida sp. nov. lived in storm-dominated shallow marine conditions. The species is from the Galgenberg Formation, which has an early Agdzian age in the unified West Gondwanan chronostratigraphy. As a result, it represents the oldest stylophoran known to date.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)227-237
Number of pages11
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2010


  • Ceratocystis
  • Stylophora
  • Echinoderms
  • Cambrian
  • Germany

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