Grasping primate origins.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

The evolutionary history that led to Eocene-and-later primates of modern aspect (Euprimates) has been uncertain. We describe a skeleton of Paleocene plesiadapiform Carpolestes simpsoni that includes most of the skull and many postcranial bones. Phylogenetic analyses indicate that Carpolestidae are closely related to Euprimates. C. simpsoni had long fingers and an opposable hallux with a nail. It lacked orbital convergence and an ankle specialized for leaping. We infer that the ancestor of Euprimates was primitively an arboreal grasper adapted for terminal branch feeding rather than a specialized leaper or visually directed predator.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Bloch, JI; Boyer, DM

Published Date

  • November 2002

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 298 / 5598

Start / End Page

  • 1606 - 1610

PubMed ID

  • 12446906

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1095-9203

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0036-8075

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1126/science.1078249


  • eng