A comparison of phenotypic variation and covariation patterns and the role of phylogeny, ecology, and ontogeny during cranial evolution of new world monkeys

Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution
G Marroig, J M Cheverud

Abstract

Similarity of genetic and phenotypic variation patterns among populations is important for making quantitative inferences about past evolutionary forces acting to differentiate populations and for evaluating the evolution of relationships among traits in response to new functional and developmental relationships. Here, phenotypic co variance and correlation structure is compared among Platyrrhine Neotropical primates. Comparisons range from among species within a genus to the superfamily level. Matrix correlation followed by Mantel's test and vector correlation among responses to random natural selection vectors (random skewers) were used to compare correlation and variance/covariance matrices of 39 skull traits. Sampling errors involved in matrix estimates were taken into account in comparisons using matrix repeatability to set upper limits for each pairwise comparison. Results indicate that covariance structure is not strictly constant but that the amount of variance pattern divergence observed among taxa is generally low and not associated with taxonomic distance. Specific instances of divergence are identified. There is no correlation between the amount of divergence in covariance patterns among the 16 genera and their phyl...Continue Reading

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