Scutigeromorph centipedes

Systematic work on centipedes by Greg Edgecombe has been supported since 2005 by the Australian Biological Resources Study, under the project "Systematics of Australian scutigeromorph centipedes and the phylogeny of the Scutigeromorpha based on morphological and molecular data".

Phylogenetic analysis of the Scutigeromorpha ("house centipedes") uses morphology and sequence data from five molecular markers, in collaboration with Gonzalo Giribet's lab at Harvard University. Scanning electron microscopy has been a source of new characters for phylogenetics and taxonomy. The scutigeromorphs have a special importance for work on arthropod phylogeny because they lie at the base of the centipede tree, and they display some characters (such as compound eyes) not otherwise observed in myriapods.

Taxonomic work aims to document the scutigeromorph fauna of Australia, which includes perhaps one-quarter of global species diversity. Collections draw on extensive surveys undertaken by Australian agencies since the 1970s, including previously undersampled regions (notably the arid zone), together with new field work to source material for DNA sequencing.