"Elephant Family Tree Needs a Rewrite" Topic
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|Tango01 ||10 Jun 2017 12:57 p.m. PST|
"The study challenges a long-held assumption among paleontologists that Palaeoloxodon antiquus was most closely related to the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus). The findings also add to the evidence that today's African elephants are two separate species, not one, as was once assumed.
"Palaeoloxodon antiquus males stood up to 4 m tall and weighed as much as 13 tons, more than twice the weight of today's largest elephants. Understanding their genetic heritage is key to keeping today's elephants from going extinct," said study co-author Dr. Alfred Roca, from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
For the study, Dr. Roca and his colleagues sequenced full mitochondrial genomes from four and partial nuclear genomes from two Palaeoloxodon antiquus fossils…"