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Effects of hybridization on pelvic morphology: a macaque model

Buck, LT, Katz, D, Ackermann, R, Hlusko, L, Kanthaswamy, S and Weaver, T (2021) Effects of hybridization on pelvic morphology: a macaque model. Jouranl of Human Evolution, 159. ISSN 0047-2484

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Ancient DNA analyses have shown that interbreeding between hominin taxa occurred multiple times. Though admixture is often reflected in skeletal phenotype, the relationship between the two remains poorly understood, hampering interpretation of human evolution. Direct study of this relationship is often impossible due to the paucity of hominin fossils and the difficulties of retrieving ancient genetic material. Here, we use a sample of known-ancestry hybrids between two closely related nonhuman primate taxa (Indian and Chinese Macaca mulatta) to investigate the effect of admixture on skeletal morphology. We focus on pelvic shape, which has potential fitness implications in hybrids, as mismatches between maternal pelvic and fetal cranial morphology are often fatal to mother and offspring. As the pelvis is also one of the skeletal regions that differs most between Homo sapiens and Neanderthals, investigating the pelvic consequences of interbreeding could be informative regarding the viability of their hybrids. We find the effect of admixture in M. mulatta is small and proportional to the relatively small morphological difference between the parent taxa. Sexual dimorphism appears to be the main determinant of pelvic shape in M. mulatta. The lack of difference in pelvic shape between Chinese and Indian M. mulatta is in contrast to that between Neanderthals and H. sapiens, 2 despite a similar split time (in generations) between the hybridizing pairs. Greater phenotypic divergence between hominins may relate to adaptations to disparate environments, but may also highlight how the unique degree of cultural buffering in hominins allowed for greater neutral divergence. In contrast to some previous work identifying extreme morphologies in first- and second-generation hybrids, here the relationship between pelvic shape and admixture is linear. This linearity may be because most sampled animals have a multi-generational admixture history or because of relatively high constraints on the pelvis compared to other skeletal regions.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 0603 Evolutionary Biology, 1601 Anthropology, 2101 Archaeology
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Q Science > QL Zoology
Q Science > QP Physiology
Divisions: Biological & Environmental Sciences (from Sep 19)
Publisher: Elsevier
Date Deposited: 30 Jun 2021 10:18
Last Modified: 04 Sep 2021 05:18
DOI or ID number: 10.1016/j.jhevol.2021.103049
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/15199
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