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Permian rugose corals underwent evolutionary episodes of assemblage changeover, biogeographical separation and extinction, which are closely related to geological events during this time. Two coral realms were recognized, the Tethyan Realm and the Cordilleran–Arctic–Uralian Realm. These are characterized by the families Kepingophyllidae and Waagenophyllidae during the Cisuralian, Waagenophyllidae in the Guadalupian and the subfamily Waagenophyllinae in the Lopingian, and the families Durhaminidae and Kleopatrinidae during the Cisuralian and major disappearance of colonial and dissepimented solitary rugose corals from the Guadalupian to the Lopingian, respectively. The development of these coral realms is controlled by the geographical barrier resulting from the Pangaea formation. According to the changes in the composition and diversity of the Permian rugose corals, a changeover event might have occurred at the end-Sakmarian and is characterized by the mixed Pennsylvanian and Permian faunas to typical Permian faunas, probably related to a global regression. In addition, three extinction events are present at the end-Kungurian, the end-Guadalupian and the end-Permian, which are respectively triggered by the northward movement of Pangaea, the Emeishan volcanic eruptions and subsequent global regression, and the global climate warming induced by the Siberian Traps eruption.

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