Advertisement

Naturwissenschaften

, Volume 98, Issue 6, pp 509–517 | Cite as

No evidence for an afrotherian-like delayed dental eruption in South American notoungulates

  • Guillaume Billet
  • Thomas Martin
Original Paper

Abstract

The fossil South American ungulates are of great interest relative to the new phylogenetic framework elaborated for living placental mammals. In particular, studies on these endemic taxa can allow for testing congruence between southern placental phylogeny and plate tectonics, beyond what has already been suggested in the Atlantogenata hypothesis based on extant afrotherians and xenarthrans. The presence of delayed dental eruption relative to skull growth is one feature characterizing the extant afrotherians and possibly the xenarthrans. Late dental eruption has been mentioned previously in South American notoungulates, thus suggesting possible resemblance with afrotherians and perhaps xenarthrans. We provide here a detailed study of the dental eruption pattern relative to the skull growth in the notoungulates. In contrast to previous statements, our results demonstrate that there is currently no evidence for an afrotherian-like delayed dental eruption in this group. For now, the inferred absence of a delayed dental eruption in notoungulates does not support atlantogenatan/afrotherian affinities for the Notoungulata, but other atlantogenatan/afrotherian characteristics remain to be explored in more detail in this group and other South American ungulates.

Keywords

Ontogeny Phylogeny Placental Growth Atlantogenata 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We would like to warmly thank Marcelo Reguero (MLP) and Ariel Revan (YPM) for providing photos of specimens; François Pujos (IANIGLA, Mendoza) and Manuel Martinez (MNHN) for helping with the literature; Bernardino Mamani Quispe (MNHN-BOL), Christine Argot, and Claire Sagne (MNHN) for access to specimens under their care; and Rico Schellhorn (Steinmann-Institut, Bonn) for helpful advice. We also thank 2 anonymous reviewers, F. Agnolin and associate editor R. Asher for their precious comments. This research has been supported by a postdoctoral fellowship of the Alexander von Humboldt-Foundation (Bonn) to G. Billet.

References

  1. Agnolin FL, Chimento NR (2011) Afrotherian affinities for endemic South American “ungulates”. Mamm Biol 76:101–108. doi: 10.1016/j.mambio.2010.12.001 Google Scholar
  2. Ameghino F (1904) Recherches de morphologie phylogénétique sur les molaires supérieures des ongulés. An Mus Nac B Aires 3(3):1–541Google Scholar
  3. Asher RJ, Lehmann T (2008) Dental eruption in afrotherian mammals. BMC Biol 6:1–11CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Asher RJ, Olbricht G (2009) Dental ontogeny in Macroscelides proboscideus (Afrotheria) and Erinaceus europaeus (Lipotyphla). J Mamm Evol 16:99–115CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Asher RJ, Bennett N, Lehmann T (2009) The new framework for understanding placental mammal evolution. BioEssays 31:853–864PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Asher RJ, Geisler JH, Sánchez-Villagra MR (2008) Morphology, paleontology and placental mammal phylogeny. Syst Biol 57:311–317PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Billet G (2010) New observations on Pyrotherium (Pyrotheria, Mammalia) and new phylogenetic hypotheses on the origin of South American ungulates. J Mamm Evol 17:21–59CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Billet G (2011) Phylogeny of the Notoungulata (Mammalia) based on cranial and dental characters. J Syst Palaeontol. doi: 10.1080/14772019.2010.528456
  9. Billet G, de Muizon C, Mamani Quispe B (2008) Late Oligocene mesotheriids (Mammalia, Notoungulata) from Salla and Lacayani (Bolivia): implications for basal mesotheriid phylogeny and distribution. Zool J Linn Soc 152:153–200CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Billet G, Patterson B, de Muizon C (2009) Craniodental anatomy of Late Oligocene archaeohyracids (Notoungulata, Mammalia) from Bolivia and Argentina and new phylogenetic hypotheses. Zool J Linn Soc 155:458–509CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Bergqvist LP (2010) Deciduous premolars of Paleocene litopterns of São José de Itaboraí Basin, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil. J Paleontol 84:858–867CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Bond M, Madden RH, Carlini AA (2006) A new specimen of Toxodontidae (Notoungulata) from the Urumaco Formation (Upper Miocene) of Venezuela. J Syst Paleontol 4:285–291CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Cassini GH, Mendoza M, Vizcaíno SF, Brago MS (2011a) Inferring habitat and feeding behaviour of Early Miocene notoungulates from Patagonia. Lethaia 44(1) doi:10.1111/j.1502-3931.2010.00231.x
  14. Cassini GH, Flores DA, Vizcaíno SF (2011b) Postnatal ontogenetic scaling of Nesodontine (Notoungulata, Toxodontidae) cranial morphology. Acta Zool. doi:10.1111/j.1463-6395.2011.00501.x
  15. Croft DA (2000) Archaeohyracidae (Mammalia, Notoungulata) from the Tinguiririca Fauna, central Chile, and the evolution and paleoecology of South American mammalian herbivores. Unpublished PhD dissertation, University of Chicago, 311 ppGoogle Scholar
  16. Croft DA, Bond M, Flynn JJ, Reguero MA, Wyss AR (2003) Large archaeohyracids (Typotheria, Notoungulata) from Central Chile and Patagonia, including a revision of Archaeotypotherium. Fieldiana Geology NS 49:1–38Google Scholar
  17. Douzery EJP, Delsuc F, Stanhope MJ, Huchon D (2003) Local molecular clocks in three nuclear genes: divergence times for rodents and other mammals and incompatibility among fossil calibrations. J Mol Evol 57:S201–S213PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Hällstrom BM, Kullberg M, Nilsson MA, Janke A (2007) Phylogenomic data analyses provide evidence that Xenarthra and Afrotheria are sister groups. Mol Biol Evol 24:2059–2068PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Hitz R, Reguero MA, Wyss A, Flynn JJ (2000) New Interatheriines (Interatheriidae, Notoungulata) from the Paleogene of Central Chile and Southern Argentina. Fieldiana Geol 42:1–26Google Scholar
  20. Holroyd P (2008) New data on dental eruption patterns in condylarths and afrotheres. J Vertebr Paleontol 28:93AGoogle Scholar
  21. Holroyd P (2009) New data on dental eruption patterns in afrotherians and paleogene mammals. J Vertebr Paleontol 29:116ACrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Horovitz I (2004) Eutherian mammal systematics and the origins of South American ungulates as based on postcranial osteology. Bull Carnegie Mus Nat Hist 36:63–79CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Kitazoe Y, Kishino H, Waddell PJ, Nakajima N, Okabayashi T et al (2007) Robust time estimation reconciles views of the antiquity of placental mammals. PLoS ONE 2(4):e384. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0000384 PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Madden RH (1997) A new toxodontid notoungulate. In: Kay RF, Madden RH, Cifelli RL, Flynn JJ (eds) Vertebrate paleontology in the neotropics: the Miocene fauna of La Venta Colombia. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, pp 335–354Google Scholar
  25. Murphy WJ, Eizirik E (2009) Placental mammals (Eutheria). In: Hedges SB, Kumar S (eds) The timetree of life. Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp 471–474Google Scholar
  26. Murphy WJ, Pringle TH, Crider TA et al (2007) Using genomic data to unravel the root of placental mammal phylogeny. Genome Res 17:413–421PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Roth S (1895) Rectificaciones sobre la denticion del Toxodon. Rev Mus La Plata 6:333–367Google Scholar
  28. Roth S (1903) Los ungulados sudamericanos. An Mus La Plata 5:1–36Google Scholar
  29. Roth S (1927) La diferenciación del sistema dentario en los ungulados, notoungulados y primates. Rev Mus La Plata 30:171–255Google Scholar
  30. Sánchez-Villagra MR, Narita Y, Kuratani S (2007) Thoracolumbar vertebral number: the first skeletal synapomorphy for afrotherian mammals. Syst Biodivers 5:1–7CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Scott WB (1912) Toxodonta and Entelonychia of the Santa Cruz Beds. Reports of the Princeton University Expeditions to Patagonia 6:111–300Google Scholar
  32. Shockey BJ, Anaya F (2008) Postcranial osteology of mammals from Salla, Bolivia (Late Oligocene): form, function, and phylogenetic implications. In: Sargis EJ, Dagosto M (eds) Mammalian evolutionary morphology, vertebrate paleobiology and paleoanthropology. Springer, the Netherlands, pp 135–157Google Scholar
  33. Sinclair WJ (1909) Typotheria of the Santa Cruz Beds. Reports of the Princeton University Expeditions to Patagonia 6:1–110Google Scholar
  34. Simpson GG (1932) Cochilius volvens from the Colpodon Beds of Patagonia. Am Mus Novit 577:1–13Google Scholar
  35. Simpson GG (1933) Structure and affinities of Trigonostylops. Am Mus Novit 608:1–28Google Scholar
  36. Simpson GG (1948) The beginning of the age of mammals in South America. Part I. Bull Am Mus Nat Hist 91:1–232Google Scholar
  37. Simpson GG (1967) The beginning of the age of mammals in South America. Part II. Bull Am Mus Nat Hist 137:1–259Google Scholar
  38. Slaughter BH, Pine RH, Etoh N (1974) Eruption of cheek teeth in Insectivora and Carnivora. J Mammal 55:115–125PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Smith BH (2000) ‘Schultz’s rule’ and the evolution of tooth emergence and replacement patterns in primates and ungulates. In: Teaford M, Smith M, Ferguson M (eds) Development, function and evolution of teeth. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp 212–227CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Tabuce R, Marivaux L, Adaci M, Bensalah M, Hartenberger J-L, Mahboubi M, Mebrouk F, Tafforeau P, Jaeger J-J (2007) Early Tertiary mammals from North Africa reinforce the molecular Afrotheria clade. Proc R Soc B 274:1159–1166PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Townsend B, Croft DA (2010) Middle Miocene Mesotheriine diversity at Cerdas, Bolivia and a reconsideration of Plesiotypotherium minus. Palaeontologia Electronica 13(1):1A, 36 ppGoogle Scholar
  42. Wible JR, Rougier GW, Novacek MJ, Asher RJ (2007) Cretaceous eutherians and Laurasian origin for placental mammals near the K/T boundary. Nature 447:1003–1006PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Wildman DE, Uddin M, Opazo JC et al (2007) Genomics, biogeography and the diversification of placental mammals. PNAS 104:14395–14400PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Steinmann-Institut für Geologie, Mineralogie und PaläontologieUniversität BonnBonnGermany

Personalised recommendations