Primate Locomotor Evolution: Biomechanical Studies of Primate Locomotion and Their Implications for Understanding Primate Neuroethology
© 2010 by Michael L. Platt and Asif A. Ghazanfar. All rights reserved. This chapter argues that primates (including humans) show patterns of locomotion and locomotor control that are different from all other mammals. Changes in limb function associated with the adaptive diversification of locomotor patterns in the primate clade probably required the evolution of profound specializations in the neural control of locomotion. Most of these putative specializations remain unknown or unexplored. This realization suggests that comparative studies of the neuroethology of locomotion in primates may offer unique insights into motor control, and such insights may have implications for fields as diverse as robotics and the clinical treatment of paralysis with brain-machine interface devices.
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