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Revista argentina de antropología biológica

On-line version ISSN 1514-7991


ROCATTI, Guido; PUCCIARELLI, Héctor M; MUNE, María C  and  PEREZ, S. Ivan. Convergencia en las proporciones craneanas entre primates del nuevo y el viejo mundo: un análisis craneofuncional. Rev Arg Antrop Biol [online]. 2014, vol.16, n.2, pp.93-102. ISSN 1514-7991.

Modern humans have been characterized by extremely lobulated cranial morphology, considered a response to the significant increase in brain size, which markedly differs from the rest of the Primates. Other Primate species, such as some platyrrhine clades, evolved independently along their evolutionary history to reach high values of relative brain size. The increase in relative brain size in these Primate clades offers an opportunity to study, at a macroevolutionary scale, to what extent there was a convergence in the evolution of external cranial morphology in Primates and what changes are specific to the human species. We study global changes in craniofacial morphology in several species of Lemuriformes, Platyrrhini and Catarrhini infraorders of Primates, and their relationship with changes in brain size, using morphometric, phylogenetic and comparative techniques. A principal component analysis showed that there is an overlap in the distribution on the shape space of Homo sapiens mainly with Ateles, Saimiri and Cebus Platyrrhini genera. The comparative analyses showed the lack of phylogenetic structure in the axis of greatest morphometric variation, and its association with the changes in relative brain size. This suggests the existence of evolutionary convergence in the external morphology of the skull and points to the change in the relative size of the brain as an intrinsic factor important for understanding morphological change in the Primate order.

Keywords : Platyrrhines; Catarrhines; Craniofunctional morphometry; Comparative method.

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