P Metaconid Development

Three states are recognized. This feature is likely of phylogenetic significance given its apparent lack in the Miocene hominoids, which helps differentiate the earlier hominoids from later hominids/hominins. The primitive condition is defined by an undeveloped metaconid or the total absence of a metaconid (= 0) as observed in Kenyapithecus (Andrews &

Walker, 1976). Dryopithecus is said to display a metaconid (Begun, 1992, 1994a), though it is undeveloped and within the range observed in the extant African hominids that are also defined by this condition. Next is an infrequent-to-variable presence of a metaconid (= 1) observed in Graecopithecus (Koufos, 1993; de Bonis & Koufos, 2001) and Praeanthropus (= 1), with all hominins preserving this morphology frequently having a metaconid (= 2).

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