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Cepaea nemoralis
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Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Gastropoda
Subclass: Heterobranchia
Infraclass: Euthyneura
Johann Wilhelm Spengel, 1881 [1]
Diversity [2]
over 30000 species

Euthyneura is a taxonomic infraclass of snails and slugs, which includes species exclusively from marine, aquatic and terrestrial gastropod mollusks in the clade Heterobranchia.


Euthyneura are considered the crown group of Gastropoda, and are characterised by several autapomorphies, but are named for euthyneury. They are considered to be the most successful and diverse group of Gastropoda. Within this taxon, the Gastropoda have reached their peak in species richness and ecological diversity. This obvious evolutionary success can probably be attributed to several factors. Marine Opisthobranchia, e.g., have evolved several clades specialised on less used food resources such as sponges or cnidarians. A key innovation in the evolution of Pulmonata was the colonization of freshwater and terrestrial habitats. [3]

Berthella martensi, a pleurobranch with the gill on the right side. Berthella martensi (Pilsbry, 1896).jpg
Berthella martensi , a pleurobranch with the gill on the right side.

Various phylogenetic studies focused on Euthyneura: Dayrat et al. (2001), [4] Dayrat & Tillier (2002) [5] and Grande et al. (2004). [6] Morphological analyses by Dayrat and Tillier (2002) [5] demonstrated the need to explore new datasets in order to critically analyse the phylogeny of this controversial group of gastropods. Klussmann-Kolb et al. (2008) traced an evolutionary scenario regarding colonisation of different habitats based on phylogenetic hypothesis and they showed that traditional classification of Euthyneura needs to be reconsidered. [3]

2010 taxonomy

Jörger et al. (2010) [7] have redefined major groups within the Heterobranchia and a cladogram showing phylogenic relations of Euthyneura is as follows: [7]


Lower Heterobranchia (including Acteonoidea) - Lower Heterobranchia does not form a clade in the study by Jörger et al. (2010): [7]





2014 taxonomy

Cladogram showing phylogenic relations of Euthyneura sensu Wägele et al. (2014): [8] [2]


Lower Heterobranchia












2016 taxonomy

Kano et al. (2016) proposed a new taxon Ringipleura and classified Ringiculoidea as sister group to Nudipleura: [2]


Lower Heterobranchia










Related Research Articles

Opisthobranchia Informal group of gastropods

Opisthobranchs is now an informal name for a large and diverse group of specialized complex gastropods which used to be united in the subclass Opisthobranchia. That taxon is no longer considered to represent a monophyletic grouping.

Heterobranchia Clade of gastropods

Heterobranchia, the heterobranchs, is a taxonomic clade of snails and slugs, which includes marine, aquatic and terrestrial gastropod mollusks.

Cephalaspidea Order of gastropods

The order Cephalaspidea, also known as the headshield slugs and bubble snails, is a major taxon of sea slugs and bubble snails, marine gastropod mollusks within the larger clade Euopisthobranchia. Bubble shells is another common name for these families of marine gastropods, some of which have thin bubble-like shells. This clade contains more than 600 species.

Acteonoidea Superfamily of gastropods

Acteonoidea is a superfamily of sea snails, or bubble snails, marine gastropod mollusks.

Pyramidelloidea Superfamily of gastropods

Pyramidelloidea is a superfamily of mostly very small sea snails, marine gastropod mollusks and micromollusks within the clade Panpulmonata.

Lower Heterobranchia Group of molluscs

Lower Heterobranchia, also known as the Allogastropoda, is a group of rather specialized, highly evolved sea slugs and sea snails, within the subclass Heterobranchia.

Nudipleura Clade of gastropods

Nudipleura are a clade of sea snails and sea slugs, marine gastropod mollusks within the large clade Heterobranchia.

<i>Siphonaria pectinata</i> Species of gastropod

Siphonaria pectinata, common name the striped false limpet, is a species of air-breathing sea snail or false limpet, a marine heterobranch gastropod mollusc in the family Siphonariidae.

Acochlidiacea Order of molluscs

Acochlidiacea, common name acochlidians, are a taxonomic clade of very unusual sea snails and sea and freshwater slugs, aquatic gastropod mollusks within the large clade Heterobranchia. Acochlidia is a variant spelling.

Umbraculoidea Superfamily of gastropods

Umbraculoidea is a superfamily of unusual false limpets with a thin soft patelliform shell, marine gastropod molluscs in the clade Umbraculida, within the clade Euopisthobranchia.

Runcinoidea is a taxonomic superfamily or a clade Runcinaecea of sea slugs, marine gastropod mollusks in the order Runcinida

The Glacidorbidae is a taxonomic family of freshwater snails.

Heteroneritidae is an extinct taxonomic family of sea snails, marine gastropod mollusks in the superfamilia Pyramidelloidea.

This overview lists proposed changes in the taxonomy of gastropods at the family level and above since 2005, when the taxonomy of the Gastropoda by Bouchet & Rocroi (2005) was published. In other words, these are recent updates in the way various groups of snails and slugs are classified.

<i>Acochlidium fijiiensis</i> Species of gastropod

Acochlidium fijiiensis is a species of freshwater gastropod, an aquatic gastropod mollusc within the family Acochlidiidae. Acochlidium fijiiensis has no shell.

Aiteng is a genus of two species of sea slugs, marine gastropod molluscs and one terrestrial species. Aiteng is the only genus in the family Aitengidae. The generic name Aiteng is derived from the name of a black puppet Ai Theng, which is one of the shadow play puppets in southern Thailand.

Panpulmonata Clade of gastropods

Panpulmonata is a taxonomic clade of snails and slugs in the clade Heterobranchia within the clade Euthyneura.

Euopisthobranchia is a taxonomic clade of snails and slugs in the clade Heterobranchia within the clade Euthyneura.

Architectibranchia is a clade of marine snails, gastropod molluscs.

Aiteng mysticus is a species of sea slug in the family Aitengidae, found around Hisamatsu, Miyako-jima, Okinawa, Japan. Morphologically it clearly belongs to the Aitengidae, but it shows differences to Aiteng ater at genus or species level. Its affinity to Aiteng ater is confirmed by comparison of the mitochondrial 16S rRNA sequences.


This article incorporates CC-BY-2.0 text from the reference [3]

  1. Johann Wilhelm Spengel (1881). "Die Geruchsorgane und des Nervensystem der Mollusken". Zeitschrift für wissenschaftliche Zoologie35(3): 333-383.
  2. 1 2 3 Kano, Yasunori; Brenzinger, Bastian; Nützel, Alexander; Wilson, Nerida G.; Schrödl, Michael (2016-08-08). "Ringiculid bubble snails recovered as the sister group to sea slugs (Nudipleura)". Scientific Reports. 6: 30908. Bibcode:2016NatSR...630908K. doi:10.1038/srep30908. ISSN   2045-2322. PMC   4976385 . PMID   27498754.
  3. 1 2 3 Klussmann-Kolb A., Dinapoli A., Kuhn K., Streit B. & Albrecht C. (2008). "From sea to land and beyond – New insights into the evolution of euthyneuran Gastropoda (Mollusca)". BMC Evolutionary Biology 2008, 8: 57. doi : 10.1186/1471-2148-8-57.
  4. Dayrat B., Tillier A., Lecointre G. & Tillier S. (2001). "New clades of euthyneuran Gastropods (Mollusca) from 28S rRNA sequences". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 19(2): 225-235. doi : 10.1006/mpev.2001.0926.
  5. 1 2 Dayrat B. & Tillier S. (2002). "Evolutionary relationships of euthyneuran gastropods (Mollusca): a cladistic re-evaluation of morphological characters". Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 135(4): 403-470. doi : 10.1046/j.1096-3642.2002.00018.x
  6. Grande C., Templado J., Cervera J. L. & Zardoya R. (2004). "Molecular Phylogeny of Euthyneura (Mollusca: Gastropoda)". Molecular Biology and Evolution 21(2): 303-313. doi : 10.1093/molbev/msh016.
  7. 1 2 3 Jörger K. M., Stöger I., Kano Y., Fukuda H., Knebelsberger T. & Schrödl M. (2010). "On the origin of Acochlidia and other enigmatic euthyneuran gastropods, with implications for the systematics of Heterobranchia". BMC Evolutionary Biology 10: 323. doi : 10.1186/1471-2148-10-323.
  8. Wägele H., Klussmann-Kolb A., Verbeek E. & Schrödl M. (2014). "Flashback and foreshadowing—a review of the taxon Opisthobranchia". Organisms Diversity & Evolution 14(1): 133–149. doi : 10.1007/s13127-013-0151-5