Platyrrhine systematics: a simultaneous analysis of molecular and morphological data

American Journal of Physical Anthropology
I HorovitzA Meyer


Platyrrhine phylogeny has been investigated repeatedly with morphological characters and DNA nuclear gene sequences, with partially inconsistent results. Given the finding in the past decade that the mitochondrial genome is a potentially valuable source of phylogenetic information, we gathered DNA sequence data of a fragment of the 16S and the entire 12S mitochondrial genes. The objectives were to generate a cladistic phylogeny based on these data and to combine them in a simultaneous analysis with morphological characters and preexisting nuclear DNA sequences. Mitochondrial data analyzed on its own yielded a cladogram that was different from those generated with other data sets. The simultaneous analysis of mitochondrial, nuclear, and morphological data yielded a tree most congruent with that generated with nuclear data and to a lesser degree with the morphological one. It depicted a basal dichotomy that led to two major clades: one of them comprised [Atelinae (Callicebus + Pitheciini)] and the other major clade comprised [Aotus ((Cebus, Saimiri) (Callitrichinae))]. The weakest point of the phylogeny was the position of Aotus as basal within their clade as opposed to more closely linked with either the callitrichines or Cebus-...Continue Reading


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