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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007 Jun 26;104(26):10808-12. Epub 2007 Jun 18.

The primate semicircular canal system and locomotion.

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  • 1Department of Anatomy and Developmental Biology, University College London, Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT, United Kingdom.

Abstract

The semicircular canal system of vertebrates helps coordinate body movements, including stabilization of gaze during locomotion. Quantitative phylogenetically informed analysis of the radius of curvature of the three semicircular canals in 91 extant and recently extinct primate species and 119 other mammalian taxa provide support for the hypothesis that canal size varies in relation to the jerkiness of head motion during locomotion. Primate and other mammalian species studied here that are agile and have fast, jerky locomotion have significantly larger canals relative to body mass than those that move more cautiously.

PMID:
17576932
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC1892787
Free PMC Article

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