Table 3

Morphological character support for Afrotheria

Character number and state change

Description of character state transformation


35 (0=>3 or 0=>2)

p4 paraconid small ==> p4 paraconid large and distinct (OSA_AT, UA_AT, UA_DT) or p4 paraconid small ==> p4 paraconid variably large and distinct (OSA_DT)

36 (1=>2)

p4 metaconid present but small relative to the protoconid ==> p4 metaconid present and approximately as large as the protoconid (OSA_DT, UA_DT)

37 (0=>2)

p4 protolophid absent ==> p4 protolophid incipient (OSA_DT)

39 (0=>2 or 0=>1)

p4 entoconid absent ==> p4 entoconid present, smaller than hypoconid (OSA_AT) or p4 entoconid absent ==> p4 entoconid variably present, smaller than hypoconid (OSA_DT)

40 (1=>2)

p4 hypoconid less than half the height of protoconid ==> p4 hypoconid large, greater than half the height of the protoconid (OSA_AT, OSA_DT, UA_AT, UA_DT)

41 (0=>1)

p4 hypolophid absent ==> incipient p4 hypolophid variably present (OSA_DT)

45 (0=>2)

p4 talonid narrower than trigonid ==> p4 talonid equal in width to the trigonid (OSA_AT, OSA_DT)

73 (0=>2 or 0=>1)

Cristid obliqua on lower molars meets hypocristid at a sharp angle ==> junction between cristid obliqua and hypocristid more open, buccal aspect of hypoconid rounded (OSA_AT, UA_AT, UA_DT) or cristid obliqua on lower molars meets hypocristid at a sharp angle ==> junction between cristid obliqua and hypocristid variably more open, buccal aspect of hypoconid rounded (OSA_DT)

77 (2=>1)

Lower molar entocristids present ==> lower molar entocristids variably absent (OSA_AT, OSA_DT)

115 (0=>2)

P3 protocone absent or highly reduced ==> P3 protocone present and small (OSA_AT, OSA_DT, UA_AT, UA_DT)

129 (0=>4)

P4 metacone absent ==> P4 metacone present, distinct, and differentiated from the paracone (OSA_AT, OSA_DT, UA_AT, UA_DT)

143 (0=>4)

M1-2 mesial cingulum broken or absent ==> M1-2 mesial cingulum complete and well-defined across all or most of the mesial face of the teeth (OSA_DT, UA_DT)

150 (0=>4)

Buccolingually extensive shelf present on buccal aspect of upper molars ==> distinct buccal cingulum on upper molars (UA_AT, UA_DT)

165 (2=>0)

M1-2 parastyles small ==> M1-2 parastyles absent (UA_AT, UA_DT)

184 (6=>A)

6 lumbar vertebrae ==> 8 lumbar vertebrae (UA_AT, UA_DT)

218 (0=>4)

Lunar-unciform contact present ==> lunar-unciform contact absent (OSA_DT, UA_DT)

267 (0=>1)

naviculocalcaneal facet absent ==> naviculocalcaneal facet present (OSA_DT, UA_DT)

291 (0=>1)

Vomeronasal organ blood vessels prominent ==> vomeronasal organ blood vessels scattered (OSA_AT, OSA_DT, UA_AT, UA_DT)

383 (0=>1)

Internal carotid medial to anterior pole of pars cochlearis ==> internal carotid lateral to anterior pole of pars cochlearis (OSA_AT, OSA_DT, UA_AT, UA_DT)

388 (5=>0 or 3=>2 or 1=>0)

Testes descend into a pendulous scrotum ==> testes intraabdominal and situated near kidneys (UA_AT, UA_DT) or testes pass into a cremasteric sac ==> testes migrate to or just through the ventral abdominal wall (OSA_AT) or testes migrate to near the bladder ==> testes intraabdominal and situated near kidneys (OSA_DT)

397 (0=>1)

One allantoic vesicle chamber ==> four allantoic vesicle chambers (OSA_AT, OSA_DT, UA_AT, UA_DT)


Character state changes identified as unambiguous morphological synapomorphies of Afrotheria when relationships among Afrosoricida, Macroscelidea, Paenungulata, and Tubulidentata are depicted as unresolved. OSA_AT = ordered and scaled analysis, accelerated transformation; OSA_DT = ordered and scaled analysis, delayed transformation; UA_AT = unordered analysis, accelerated transformation; UA_DT = unordered analysis, delayed transformation.

Seiffert BMC Evolutionary Biology 2007 7:224   doi:10.1186/1471-2148-7-224

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