PALEONTOLOGY: A Silurian maxillate placoderm illuminates jaw evolution

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

The discovery ofEntelognathusrevealed the presence of maxilla, premaxilla, and dentary, supposedly diagnostic osteichthyan bones, in a Silurian placoderm. However, the relationship between these marginal jaw bones and the gnathal plates of conventional placoderms, thought to represent the inner dental arcade, remains uncertain. Here we report a second Silurian maxillate placoderm, which bridges the gnathal and maxillate conditions. We propose that the maxilla, premaxilla, and dentary are homologous to the gnathal plates of placoderms and that all belong to the same dental arcade. The gnathal-maxillate transformation occurred concurrently in upper and lower jaws, predating the addition of infradentary bones to the lower jaw.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles