Standard Article

Cambrian Radiation

  1. James W Valentine

Published Online: 19 APR 2001

DOI: 10.1038/npg.els.0001644



How to Cite

Valentine, J. W. 2001. Cambrian Radiation. eLS. .

Author Information

  1. University of California, Berkeley, California, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 19 APR 2001


It is consistent with the fossil record that all living phyla had evolved by the end of Early Cambrian time, over half a billion years ago. Many phyla first appear as marine fossils during a 10-million-year period in the Early Cambrian known as the Cambrian explosion, and radiated rapidly to produce marine communities analogous to those of today.


  • phyla;
  • fossils;
  • evolution;
  • phylogeny;
  • skeletonization