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A test for paedomorphism in domestic pig cranial morphology

A test for paedomorphism in domestic pig cranial morphology

Title: A test for paedomorphism in domestic pig cranial morphology
Author: Evin, Allowen
Owen, Joseph
Larson, Greger
Debiais-Thibaud, Mélanie
Cucchi, Thomas
Viðarsdóttir, Una Strand
Dobney, Keith
Date: 2017-08
Language: English
Scope: 20170321
University/Institute: Háskóli Íslands
University of Iceland
Department: Lífvísindasetur (HÍ)
Biomedical Center (UI)
Series: Biology Letters;13(8)
ISSN: 1744-9561
1744-957X (eISSN)
DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2017.0321
Subject: Domestication; Heterochrony; Paedomorphism,; Ontogeny; Sus scrofa; Geometric morphometrics; Húsdýr; Klaufdýr; Svín; Líffærafræði
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11815/578

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Evin, A., Owen, J., Larson, G., Debiais-Thibaud, M., Cucchi, T., Vidarsdottir, U. S., & Dobney, K. (2017). A test for paedomorphism in domestic pig cranial morphology. Biology Letters, 13(8). doi:10.1098/rsbl.2017.0321


Domestic animals are often described as paedomorphic, meaning that they retain juvenile characteristics into adulthood. Through a three-dimensional landmark-based geometric morphometric analysis of cranial morphology at three growth stages, we demonstrate that wild boar (n ¼ 138) and domestic pigs (n ¼ 106) (Sus scrofa) follow distinct ontogenetic trajectories. With the exception of the size ratio between facial and neurocranial regions, paedomorphism does not appear to be the primary pattern describing the observed differences between wild and domestic pig cranial morphologies. The cranial phenotype of domestic pigs instead involves developmental innovation during domestication. This result questions the long-standing assumption that domestic animal phenotypes are paedomorphic forms of their wild counterparts.


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