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Tarsiers confirmed as sister group to anthropoids (free pdf)



From: Ben Creisler
bcreisler@gmail.com


A non-dino paper that may be interest to all of us primates. It's open access.

Gerrit Hartig, Gennady Churakov, Wesley C. Warren, Jürgen Brosius,
Wojciech Makałowski & Jürgen Schmitz (2013)
Retrophylogenomics Place Tarsiers on the Evolutionary Branch of Anthropoids.
Scientific Reports 3, Article number: 1756
doi:10.1038/srep01756
http://www.nature.com/srep/2013/130430/srep01756/full/srep01756.html


One of the most disputed issues in primate evolution and thus of our
own primate roots, is the phylogenetic position of the Southeast Asian
tarsier. While much molecular data indicate a basal place in the
primate tree shared with strepsirrhines (prosimian monophyly
hypothesis), data also exist supporting either an earlier divergence
in primates (tarsier-first hypothesis) or a close relationship with
anthropoid primates (Haplorrhini hypothesis). The use of retroposon
insertions embedded in the Tarsius genome afforded us the unique
opportunity to directly test all three hypotheses via three pairwise
genome alignments. From millions of retroposons, we found 104 perfect
orthologous insertions in both tarsiers and anthropoids to the
exclusion of strepsirrhines, providing conflict-free evidence for the
Haplorrhini hypothesis, and none supporting either of the other two
positions. Thus, tarsiers are clearly the sister group to anthropoids
in the clade Haplorrhini.