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This book updates, summarizes and synthesizes past and current research regarding the origin of the Order Primates. When did Primates arise? To what group of mammals are they most closely related? What is the functional and adaptive meaning of their constellation of derived characteristics? The papers in this volume examine hypotheses that have dominated our notions regarding early primate evolution and by coupling this with an emergent body of novel evidence due to new fossil discoveries and technological and methodological advances, provide a long overdue multidisciplinary reanalysis of the suite of derived life history, socioecological, neural, visual, circumorbital, locomotor, postural and masticatory specializations of the first primates. This integrative neontological and paleontological perspective is critical for understanding major behavioral and morphological transformations during the later evolution of higher primate clades. Primate Origins: Adaptations and Evolution is ideal for advanced undergraduates, graduate students and professionals in the fields of primatology, anthropology, mammalogy, and paleontology.
Supraordinal Relationships of Primates and Their Time of Origin.- A Molecular Classification for the Living Orders of Placental Mammals and the Phylogenetic Placement of Primates.- New Light on the Dates of Primate Origins and Divergence.- The Postcranial Morphology of Ptilocercus lowii (Scandentia, Tupaiidae) and its Implications for Primate Supraordinal Relationships.- Primate Origins: A Reappraisal of Historical Data Favoring Tupaiid Affinities.- Primate Taxonomy, Plesiadapiforms, and Approaches to Primate Origins.- Adaptations and Evolution of the Cranium.- Jaw-Muscle Function and the Origin of Primates.- Were Basal Primates Nocturnal? Evidence From Eye and Orbit Shape.- Oculomotor Stability and the Functions of the Postorbital Bar and Septum.- Primate Origins and the Function of the Circumorbital Region: What's Load Got to Do with It?.- Adaptations and Evolution of the Postcranium.- Origins of Grasping and Locomotor Adaptations in Primates: Comparative and Experimental Approaches Using an Opossum Model.- Evolvability, Limb Morphology, and Primate Origins.- Primate Gaits and Primate Origins.- Morphological Correlates of Forelimb Protraction in Quadrupedal Primates.- Ancestral Locomotor Modes, Placental Mammals, and the Origin of Euprimates: Lessons From History.- The Postcranial Morphotype of Primates.- New Skeletons of Paleocene-Eocene Plesiadapiformes: A Diversity of Arboreal Positional Behaviors in Early Primates.- Adaptations and Evolution of the Brain, Behavior, Physiology, and Ecology.- Start Small and Live Slow: Encephalization, Body Size, and Life History Strategies in Primate Origins and Evolution.- Evolutionary Specializations of Primate Brain Systems.- New Views on the Origin of Primate Social Organization.- Primate Bioenergetics: An Evolutionary Perspective.- Episodic Molecular Evolution of Some Protein Hormones in Primates and Its Implications for Primate Adaptation.- Parallelisms Among Primates and Possums.- Perspectives on Primate Color Vision.