HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Scientists debate meaning of 40-million-year-old primate fossils in Nature

CHICAGO--Fossils recently discovered in Egypt fill one of the gaps in the evolutionary tree of primates and double the known age of one of its main branches. Because there are still so many gaps in the tree, statistical calculations push the origin of primates, including the earliest ancestors of humans, back to about 90 million years ago at least 20 million years earlier than previously thought.

Analyses of DNA sequences confirm this early date and indicate that, contrary to a widespread assumption, primates did not originate in Africa. The new fossil evidence supports a novel proposal that lemurs, lorises and bushbabies, which comprise a sister group to higher primates, might have originated in Indo-Madagascar rather than in Africa.

So says Robert D. Martin, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at The Field Museum in Chicago, and author of a commentary about a paper by Seiffert and colleagues that describes the new primate fossils. Both the paper and the commentary will be published in the March 27 issue of Nature.

Martin calls the fossils "spectacular," but disagrees with the researchers' own interpretations. "It's great how in one fell swoop, the researchers have doubled the known age of lorises and bushbabies," he says. "Unfortunately, however, they are still trying to squeeze their findings into a traditional model of primate evolution that is based on an insufficient fossil record, which leads to a serious underestimation of divergence times for the entire group."

Consisting of teeth and jaw fragments, the fossils were found in the Fayum Depression on the eastern edge of the Sahara Desert in Egypt, the best site for early African fossil mammals. They represent Saharagalago (a bushbaby) and Karanisia (a loris), adding two new genera to only four that were previously known for bushbabies and lorises. The well-preserved teeth date from about 40 million years ago, twice as old as the already known fossils for these tw
'"/>

Contact: Greg Borzo
gborzo@fieldmusuem.org
312-665-7106
Field Museum
26-Mar-2003


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Scientists to prototype cyberinfrastructure for research and education access to ocean observatories
2. Scientists sequence genome of kind of organism central to biospheres carbon cycle
3. Scientists find nanowires capable of detecting individual viruses
4. Scientists discover potential new way to control drug-resistant bacteria
5. Scientists explore genome of methane-breathing microbe
6. Scientists decipher genetic code of biothreat pathogen
7. Stuck on you: Scientists lay bare secrets of bacterial attachment proteins
8. Scientists discover proteins involved in spread of HIV-1 infection
9. Scientists fear new Ebola outbreak may explain sudden gorilla disappearance
10. Scientists reinvent DNA as template to produce organic molecules
11. Scientists visualise cellular handmaiden that restores shape to proteins

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:11/19/2019)... HAUPPAUGE, N.Y. (PRWEB) , ... November 19, 2019 , ... ... of MJBizDaily , MJBizCon 2019 is the largest gathering of MJBiz ... attendees exceeding 35,000, and programming to benefit every sector, there is no show quite ...
(Date:11/12/2019)... ... November 12, 2019 , ... ... design and manufacturer of technical ergonomic seating solutions, announced this week that ... Healthier Hospital Initiative guidelines. Established by Practice Greenhealth, a health care membership ...
(Date:11/11/2019)... ... 2019 , ... MicroGenDX, the world leader in providing Next ... award-winning study “Next Generation Sequencing for the Diagnosis of Periprosthetic Knee Infection: A ... using Next Generation DNA Sequencing to examine the ability of NGS to identify ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/22/2019)... , ... October 22, 2019 , ... ... has announced that its lead program, DBI-001, met its primary safety endpoints, with ... labeled phase 2a clinical trial for the treatment of interdigital tinea pedis (athlete’s ...
(Date:10/15/2019)... ... October 14, 2019 , ... ARPR , an award-winning tech PR agency at the epicenter ... a Health Care Agency of the Year in the Ragan’s Health Care PR & Marketing ... by Ragan’s. The firm also revealed today that its healthIT practice group grew by 18 ...
(Date:10/10/2019)... ... October 10, 2019 , ... R3 Stem Cell announces it has added ... 18-19th, 2019 in Las Vegas with spots still open. , The speaker, Dr. Ian ... Ivy League universities including Cornell, Harvard and Dartmouth. He currently serves as the Chief ...
(Date:10/8/2019)... ... October 07, 2019 , ... Erchonia Corporation, the global leader ... announces that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted the company ... relief of chronic neck and shoulder pain of musculoskeletal origin. , Erchonia continues ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: