Document Detail

Similarities in Aegyptopithecus and Afropithecus facial morphology.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  1904388     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Recently discovered cranial fossils from the Oligocene deposits of the Fayum depression in Egypt provide many details of the facial morphology of Aegyptopithecus zeuxis. Similar features are found in the Miocene hominoid Afropithecus turkanensis. Their presence is the first good evidence of a strong phenetic link between the Oligocene and Miocene hominoids of Africa. A comparison of trait lists emphasizes the similarities of the two fossil species, and leads us to conclude that the two fossil genera share many primitive facial features. In addition, we studied facial morphology using finite-element scaling analysis and found that the two genera show similarities in morphological integration, or the way in which biological landmarks relate to one another in three dimensions to define the form of the organism. Size differences between the two genera are much greater than the relatively minor shape differences. Analysis of variability in landmark location among the four Aegyptopithecus specimens indicates that variability within the sample is not different from that found within two samples of modern macaques. We propose that the shape differences found among the four Aegyptopithecus specimens simply reflect individual variation in facial characteristics, and that the similarities in facial morphology between Aegyptopithecus and Afropithecus probably represent a complex of primitive facial features retained over millions of years.
M G Leakey; R E Leakey; J T Richtsmeier; E L Simons; A C Walker
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Folia primatologica; international journal of primatology     Volume:  56     ISSN:  0015-5713     ISO Abbreviation:  Folia Primatol.     Publication Date:  1991  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1991-07-18     Completed Date:  1991-07-18     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0370723     Medline TA:  Folia Primatol (Basel)     Country:  SWITZERLAND    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  65-85     Citation Subset:  IM    
National Museums of Kenya, Nairobi.
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MeSH Terms
Facial Bones / anatomy & histology*
Haplorhini / anatomy & histology*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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