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Assembling the Squamate Tree of Life: Perspectives from the Phenotype and the Fossil Record
TLDR
This study relied on traditionally prepared specimens as well as high-resolution computed tomography scans that afforded unprecendented access to the cranial anatomy of Squamata to provide an unparalleled sample of the phenotype enabling it to more fully explore the extreme incongruences between molecular and morphological topologies for the squamate tree of life.
SYSTEMATICS OF THE AMPHISBAENIA (LEPIDOSAURIA:SQUAMATA) BASED ON MORPHOLOGICAL EVIDENCE FROM RECENT AND FOSSIL FORMS
TLDR
A phylogenetic study of the Amphisbaenia is presented based on morphological characters investigated in living and fossil forms, which implies significant gaps in the fossil record of all other am Memphisbaenian taxa, and the reacquisition of some seemingly primitive features in some fossil rhineurids.
Repeated evolution of limblessness and digging heads in worm lizards revealed by DNA from old bones
  • M. Kearney, B. Stuart
  • Biology, Medicine
    Proceedings of the Royal Society of London…
  • 22 August 2004
TLDR
A phylogenetic analysis of two nuclear genes obtained from both fresh tissues and museum specimens of worm lizards shows the limbless Rhineuridae to be the most basal lineage, whereas the limbed Bipedidae occupy a more derived position as the sister–taxon to a Trogonophidae–Amphisbaenidae clade.
PROBLEMS DUE TO MISSING DATA IN PHYLOGENETIC ANALYSES INCLUDING FOSSILS: A CRITICAL REVIEW
TLDR
Missing data simply represent the unknown and should not be viewed as an impediment to considering all available evidence in phylogenetic analyses, nor used as justification for excluding specific taxa or characters.
Appendicular Skeleton in Amphisbaenians (Reptilia: Squamata)
TLDR
Variability found here in the appendicular skeleton provides a new source of character data for ongoing phylogenetic studies of the amphisbaenians, and suggests both different patterns of reduction among higher taxa and possible new functional roles beyond the primitive one of supporting the hind limb.
An Investigation into the Occurrence of Plicidentine in the Teeth of Squamate Reptiles
TLDR
The results indicate that plicidentine is best interpreted as a synapomorphy of Varanoidea, and note that much more anatomical complexity exists than previously thought in the dental and attachment tissues of these groups.
The Palatal Dentition in Squamate Reptiles: Morphology, Development, Attachment, and Replacement
TLDR
It is concluded that tooth attachment geometry reflects, at least partially, constraints imposed by attachment to substrates of varying shapes and therefore supports hypothesized developmental homology between marginal and palatal dentitions.
Cranial anatomy of the extinct amphisbaenian Rhineura hatcherii (Squamata, Amphisbaenia) based on high‐resolution X‐ray computed tomography
TLDR
This study corrects several previous misidentifications of elements in the rhineurid skull and sheds light on skull construction generally in “shovel‐headed” amphisbaenians.
Cranial anatomy of the spade‐headed amphisbaenian Diplometopon zarudnyi (Squamata, amphisbaenia) based on high‐resolution X‐ray computed tomography
TLDR
Comparison of Diplometopon to the two other amphisbaenians previously described in comparable detail, Rhineura hatcherii and Amphisbaena alba, reveals a mosaic of cranial similarities and differences that reflects functional demands, shared ancestry, and/or convergence.
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