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Title: Microtomographic study of hominin lower molars. Gran Dolina, Arago and Sima de los Huesos comparison and evolutionary inferences
Authors: Martinón-Torres, María
Martínez de Pinillos, Marina
Martín-Francés, Laura
Bermúdez de Castro, José María
Vialet, Amélie
Lumley, Marie-Antoinette de
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: Institut de Paléontologie Humaine (IPH)
Citation: Colloque international 50 anniversaire de la Caune de l'Arago (1964-2014)
Abstract: Due to new discoveries and interpretations, the evolution of the genus Homo during the Early and the Middle Pleistocene in Europe has become a topic of great interest. The archaeological, paleontological and molecular evidences suggest that the settlement of the European continent depended upon the non-linear recruitment of populations and complex interactions among them, including the possibility of interbreeding. The aim of this study is to contribute to the analysis of the affinities between the Early and the Middle Pleistocene populations in Europe by analyzing the external and internal morphology of the lower molars by means of microtomography (mCT). In particular, we will focus in the pattern of trigonid and talonid crests expression, since these features are known to provide significant taxonomic and phylogenetic information. We will present a comparative study of the outer enamel surface (OES) and enamel dentine junction (EDJ) surfaces of H. antecessor, H. heidelbergensis (Arago and Sima de los Huesos samples), H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens. Previous studies revealed that Sima de los Huesos (SH) and the Arago specimens show clear dental Neandertal affinities. However, Arago teeth have been also described as more primitive than SH and somehow intermediate between SH and the Gran Dolina-TD6 fossils. Morphological comparisons at the dentine level among the only human remains known from the Early Pleistocene of Europe (H. antecessor) and the largest and more representative samples for the Middle Pleistocene of Europe (Arago and Sima de los Huesos) together with H. sapiens and H. neanderthalensis will provide new and valuable information to explore the evolutionary scenario of the European settlement. Our study reveals that Arago lower molars share some EDJ features with SH (and thus, are close to the Neanderthal lineage) but in other traits its pattern of expression is closer to that of the Early Pleistocene fossils from Gran Dolina-TD6. The polarity (primitive-derived gradient) of the features is discussed with regard to H. sapiens and H. neanderthalensis trigonid and talonid crest expression. To the light of our mCT study, we present some evolutionary interpretations of the relationship between the Arago hominins and the Early and Middle Pleistocene hominins of Europe.
Type: Presentation
Appears in Collections:Congresos, encuentros científicos y estancias de investigación

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