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Vision Res. 1998 Nov;38(21):3307-13.

A perspective on color vision in platyrrhine monkeys.

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  • 1Neuroscience Research Institute, University of California, Santa Barbara 93106, USA.


Studies carried out over the past two decades show that many platyrrhine (New World) monkeys have polymorphic color vision. This condition results from the sorting of allelic versions of X-chromosome cone opsin genes at a single gene site, yielding a mixture of dichromatic and trichromatic phenotypes in the population. Two genera of platyrrhine monkey are known to deviate significantly from this pattern. Examination of color vision, photopigments, and photopigment genes of all of these monkeys have stimulated a renewed interest in understanding the evolution of primate color vision.

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