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Nature2 August 2001

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Nature © Macmillan Publishers Ltd.

Skull structure: The making of Neanderthals

Nature cover 2 August 2001

Computerized analysis of the skulls of Neanderthals and of anatomically modern humans shows that the distinctive features of Neanderthals were probably already evident in the newborn, rather than developing gradually through to adulthood. This supports the idea that Homo neanderthalensis and Homo sapiens are morphologically discrete, separate species. The analysis uses virtual fossil reconstruction and geometric morphometrics to compare shape variation and reveals species-specific early modes of growth and development in various regions of the skull. The cover shows a series of Neanderthal crania during development — see the movie in the supplementary information section of the paper (below).

letters to nature
Neanderthal cranial ontogeny and its implications for late hominid diversity
MARCIA S. PONCE DE LEÓN AND CHRISTOPH P. E. ZOLLIKOFER
Nature 412, 534-538 (2 August 2001)
| First Paragraph | Full Text | PDF (362 K) | Supplementary Information |

2 August 2001 table of contents

 

  
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