Bangiomorpha pubescens is a red alga.[1] It is the first known sexually reproducing organism. A multicellular fossil of Bangiomorpha pubescens was recovered from the Hunting Formation in Somerset Island, Canada that strongly resembles the modern red alga Bangia despite occurring in rocks dating to 1,047 million years ago, during the Stenian period.[2] This fossil of a type of red algae is the oldest example of an organism belonging to an extant phylum. The fossil includes differentiated reproductive cells that are the oldest evidence of sexual reproduction. Sexual reproduction increased genetic variation, which led to an increased rate of evolution and the diversification of eukaryotes.

Temporal range:
1047 Ma +13/–17 Ma
Scientific classification edit
(unranked): Archaeplastida
Division: Rhodophyta
Class: Bangiophyceae
Order: Bangiales
Family: Bangiaceae
Genus: Bangiomorpha
B. pubescens
Binomial name
Bangiomorpha pubescens


  1. ^ Nicholas J. Butterfield (2000). "Bangiomorpha pubescens n. gen., n. sp.: implications for the evolution of sex, multicellularity, and the Mesoproterozoic/Neoproterozoic radiation of eukaryotes". Paleobiology. 26 (3): 386–404. doi:10.1666/0094-8373(2000)026<0386:BPNGNS>2.0.CO;2.
  2. ^ Gibson, Timothy M; Shih, Patrick M; Cumming, Vivien M; Fischer, Woodward W; Crockford, Peter W; Hodgskiss, Malcolm S.W; Wörndle, Sarah; Creaser, Robert A; Rainbird, Robert H; Skulski, Thomas M; Halverson, Galen P (2017). "Precise age of Bangiomorpha pubescens dates the origin of eukaryotic photosynthesis" (PDF). Geology. 46 (2): 135–138. doi:10.1130/G39829.1.