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The evolution of human and ape hand proportions
Almécija, Sergio (Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont)
Smaers, Jeroen B. (Stony Brook University. Department of Anthropology)
Jungers, William L. (Stony Brook University. Department of Anatomical Sciences)

Date: 2015
Abstract: Human hands are distinguished from apes by possessing longer thumbs relative to fingers. However, this simple ape-human dichotomy fails to provide an adequate framework for testing competing hypotheses of human evolution and for reconstructing the morphology of the last common ancestor (LCA) of humans and chimpanzees. We inspect human and ape hand-length proportions using phylogenetically informed morphometric analyses and test alternative models of evolution along the anthropoid tree of life, including fossils like the plesiomorphic ape Proconsul heseloni and the hominins Ardipithecus ramidus and Australopithecus sediba. Our results reveal high levels of hand disparity among modern hominoids, which are explained by different evolutionary processes: autapomorphic evolution in hylobatids (extreme digital and thumb elongation), convergent adaptation between chimpanzees and orangutans (digital elongation) and comparatively little change in gorillas and hominins. The human (and australopith) high thumb-to-digits ratio required little change since the LCA, and was acquired convergently with other highly dexterous anthropoids.
Note: Número d'acord de subvenció MINECO/CGL2014-54373-P
Rights: Aquest document està subjecte a una llicència d'ús Creative Commons. Es permet la reproducció total o parcial, la distribució, la comunicació pública de l'obra i la creació d'obres derivades, fins i tot amb finalitats comercials, sempre i quan es reconegui l'autoria de l'obra original. Creative Commons
Language: Anglès
Document: article ; recerca ; publishedVersion
Published in: Nature communications, Vol. 6 (2015) , art. 7717, ISSN 2041-1723

DOI: 10.1038/ncomms8717
PMID: 26171589

11 p, 1.5 MB

The record appears in these collections:
Research literature > UAB research groups literature > Research Centres and Groups (research output) > Experimental sciences > Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont (ICP)
Articles > Research articles
Articles > Published articles

 Record created 2018-02-21, last modified 2020-08-09

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