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The evolution of the respiratory system

Discussion of everything related to the Theory of Evolution.

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The evolution of the respiratory system

Postby ProChemist » Wed Feb 17, 2016 4:15 pm

Biology is not my main topic, so I don't have much knowledge. After doing some researching on the Internet, I find some articles about the evolution of the respiratory system. Still, I lack explanation about what animals today represent the early as well as the later stages in this development.

Can someone please give examples of animals which have the simplest respiratory systems, as well as the most advanced and efficient? My suggestion is that worms are simple with just direct oxygen uptake through its skin. After that, insects come. After that, fishes and similar, which have gills. After that, terrestrials come. I'm not sure I have the whole concept clear and in detail. Please guide me.

I know that manatees have very simple respiration where they get their oxygen only by diffusion and that their cells in need of oxygen are located very superficial in the manatee. Furthermore, I think that gills are pretty sophisticated organs, still they are not as effective as our lungs. I know that volume of a body is not proportional to area, but exponential; this means that with increased volume, its surface won't increase proportionally, and therefore more efficient respiratory systems are required. As I understand it, we humans have the most developed respiratory system - haven't we?

Thanks.
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Postby Darby » Wed Mar 30, 2016 4:52 pm

Most of what you're saying doesn't really make sense. Manatees have lungs, insect systems are extremely complex, gills are very good at getting oxygen from a medium that doesn't hold that much of it.
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