WoRMS source details
McHugh, Damhnait. (1997). Molecular evidence that echiurans and pogonophorans are derived annelids. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 94: 8006–8009.
Molecular evidence that echiurans and pogonophorans are derived annelids.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Kristian Fauchald's Polychaeta DB
The Annelida, which includes the polychaetes and the clitellates, has long held the taxonomic rank of phylum. The unsegmented, mud-dwelling echiuran spoon worms and the gutless, deep-sea pogonophoran tube worms (including vestimentiferans) share several embryological and morphological features with annelids, but each group also has been considered as a separate metazoan phylum based on the unique characters each group displays. Phylogenetic analyses of DNA sequences from the nuclear gene elongation factor-1α place echiurans and pogonophorans within the Annelida. This result, indicating the derived loss of segmentation in echiurans, has profound implications for our understanding of the evolution of metazoan body plans and challenges the traditional view of the phylum-level diversity and evolutionary relationships of protostome worms.