Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Inner Ear May Hold Key to Ancient Primate Behavior



ScienceDaily (June 13, 2012) — CT scans of fossilized primate skulls or skull fragments from both the Old and New Worlds may shed light on how these extinct animals moved, especially for those species without any known remains, according to an international team of researchers.

The researchers looked at the bony labyrinth in fossil remains and compared them to CT scans previously obtained from living primate species. The bony labyrinth of the inner ear is made up of the cochlea -- the major organ of hearing -- the vestibule and the three semicircular canals which sense head motion and provide input to synchronize movement with visual stimuli.

"Almost in every case where there is a fossilized skull, the semicircular canals are present and well preserved," said Timothy Ryan, assistant professor of anthropology, geosciences and information sciences and technology, Penn State. "They are embedded in a very dense part of the skull and so are protected."


http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120613102420.htm

No comments:

Post a comment

You only need to enter your comment once! Comments will appear once they have been moderated. This is so as to stop the would-be comedian who has been spamming the comments here with inane and often offensive remarks. You know who you are!

Related Posts with Thumbnails

ShareThis