Journal of Mammalian Evolution

, Volume 20, Issue 3, pp 191–198

The Bony Labyrinth in Diprotodontian Marsupial Mammals: Diversity in Extant and Extinct Forms and Relationships with Size and Phylogeny


  • Léanie Alloing-Séguier
    • Université Montpellier 2Institut des Sciences de l’Evolution (UMR-CNRS 5554)
  • Marcelo R. Sánchez-Villagra
    • Palaeontologisches Institut und Museum
  • Michael S. Y. Lee
    • Earth Sciences Section, South Australian Museum
    • Université Montpellier 2Institut des Sciences de l’Evolution (UMR-CNRS 5554)
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10914-013-9228-3

Cite this article as:
Alloing-Séguier, L., Sánchez-Villagra, M.R., Lee, M.S.Y. et al. J Mammal Evol (2013) 20: 191. doi:10.1007/s10914-013-9228-3


The shape of the bony labyrinth of the inner ear was quantified using geometric morphometrics in a sample of 16 species of living marsupial diprotodontians, the extinct Diprotodon and Thylacoleo, and four outgroups. X-ray micro-computed tomography (μCT) and conventional computed tomography (CT) were used to acquire 3D data. The analyses of 22 landmarks revealed a strong body-mass related allometric pattern. A discriminant analysis on allometry-free labyrinthine shape served to evaluate the phylogenetic signal portion of the labyrinth for Macropodiformes, Phalangeroidea, Petauroidea, and Vombatiformes. The inner shape of Thylacoleo is consistent with its phylogenetic placement as a vombatiform.


Inner earDiprotodontiaDiprotodonThylacoleoGeometric morphometricsAllometry

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013