Heterochrony and the origin of tetrapods

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38 Citations (Scopus)


Long, J. A. 1990 04 15: Heterochrony and the origin of tetrapods. Lethaia, Vol. 23, pp. 157–166. Oslo. ISSN 0024–1164. Juveniles of the osteolepifonn fish Eusthenopteron show more features in common with primitive tetrapods than any other crossopterygian group. These similarities indicate that paedomorphosis may have played an important role directing anagenesis of cranial characters in the fish‐tetrapod transition. The development of the tetrapod limb, however, probably resulted from peramorphosis. The first tetrapods may have originated in the East Gondwana vertebrate Province early in the Devonian, based on the oldest known tetrapod footprints from Australia. Furthermore, the biogeographic distribution of plesiomorphic osteichthyans indicates that the monophyletic group ‘rhizodontiforms. osteolepiforms and tetrapods' most likely arose in east Gondwana.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-166
Number of pages10
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1990
Externally publishedYes


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