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Recently analyzed fossil was not human ancestor as claimed, anthropologists say
Date:3/2/2010

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However, Kirk, Williams and their colleagues point out that short snouts and deep jaws are known to have evolved multiple times among primates, including several times within the lemur/loris lineage. They further argue that Darwinius lacks most of the key anatomical features that could demonstrate a close evolutionary relationship with living haplorhines (apes, monkeys, humans, and tarsiers).

For instance, haplorhines have a middle ear with two chambers and a plate of bone that shields the eyes from the chewing muscles.

"There is no evidence that Darwinius shared these features with living haplorhines," says Kirk. "And if you can't even make that case, you can forget about Darwinius being a close relative of humans or other anthropoids."


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Contact: Gary Susswein
susswein@austin.utexas.edu
512-471-4945
University of Texas at Austin
Source:Eurekalert

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