This book deals with widely different aspects of the biology of hagfishes.
This book deals with widely different aspects of the biology of hagfishes. It presents reviews of recent research, covering topics as palaeontology, systematics, ecology, immunology and reproduction as well as structure an dfunction of important organs and organ systems: skeleton, muscle, skin, respiratory organs, circulatory systems, kidney, endocrine organs, nervous systems and sensory organs. Hagfishes are shown to be far from the sluggish, degenerate animals they were considered a few decades ago. It becomes clearr that in addition to possessing original craniate traits, these unique animals exhibit some highly advanced solutions to life in the cold and dark environment, where they normally live. The book is written by an international team of specialists who integrate the most recent results with previous published accounts on hagfish biology. As hagfishes generally are considered a sister group to vertebrates, with affinities to fossil palaeozoic agnathans, this book will be of great value to all interested in vertebrate evolution.