Anklebone kicks up primate debate

2:35pm, November 18, 2003

An anklebone excavated last year in southern Asia may put a controversial theory of primate evolution on firmer footing. The nearly 40-million-year-old fossil adds to evidence that anthropoids, a primate group that includes monkeys, apes, and humans, originated in Asia, according to a team led by Laurent Marivaux of Université Montpellier II in France.

The identity of comparably ancient primate remains, unearthed near the site of the new find in Myanmar, has inspired plenty of debate (SN: 10/16/99, p. 244: Some researchers classify these finds as remains of anthropoids, while others regard them as fossils of adapiforms, a group that includes extinct species related to lemurs and lorises.

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