The Evolutionary Origin And Diversification Of Feathers

@article{Prum2002TheEO,
  title={The Evolutionary Origin And Diversification Of Feathers},
  author={Richard O. Prum and Alan H. Brush},
  journal={The Quarterly Review of Biology},
  year={2002},
  volume={77},
  pages={261 - 295}
}
  • R. Prum, A. Brush
  • Published 1 September 2002
  • Biology
  • The Quarterly Review of Biology
Progress on the evolutionary origin and diversification of feathers has been hampered by conceptual problems and by the lack of plesiomorphic feather fossils. Recently, both of these limitations have been overcome by the proposal of the developmental theory of the origin of feathers, and the discovery of primitive feather fossils on nonavian theropod dinosaurs. The conceptual problems of previous theories of the origin of feathers are reviewed, and the alternative developmental theory is… 
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Current evidence strongly suggests that birds are theropod dinosaurs, and that the most primitive known feathers are found on nonflying animals, which suggests that feathers did not evolve as flight structures.
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An evolutionary model is proposed here to describe the major stages of feather evolution, a process characterized by a combination of both transformational and innovative modifications.
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Fossil evidence of an intermediate and critical stage in the incremental evolution of feathers which has been predicted by developmental theories but hitherto undocumented by evidence from both the recent and the fossil records is reported.
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TLDR
F fossil specimens will continue to provide key data for the reconstruction and documentation of the evolutionary history of feathers, including evolutionary experiments and forms that no longer occur in nature.
THE ORIGIN AND EARLY EVOLUTION OF FEATHERS:INSIGHTS FROM RECENT PALEONTOLOGICAL AND NEONTOLOGICAL DATA
TLDR
Five major morphogenesis events are inferred to have occurred sequentially early in feather evolution before the origin of the Aves, and the function of the first feather is inferred to be neither related to flight nor to insulation.
S06-1 Follicles and the origin of feathers
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A phylogeny for feathers based on morphology and molecular information indicates that the most likely common ancestor was a simple, tubular epidermal filament derived from a conical tubercle, and this model is sufficient to account for all features of the feather character.
Exceptional dinosaur fossils show ontogenetic development of early feathers
TLDR
An early-juvenile specimen and a late- juvenile specimen, both referable to the oviraptorosaur Similicaudipteryx, recovered from the Lower Cretaceous Yixian Formation of western Liaoning, China are described, suggesting that early feathers were developmentally more diverse than modern ones and that some developmental features have been lost in feather evolution.
New specimen of Archaeopteryx provides insights into the evolution of pennaceous feathers
TLDR
An analysis of the phylogenetic distribution of pennaceous feathers on the tail, hindlimb and arms of advanced maniraptorans and basal avialans strongly indicates that these structures evolved in a functional context other than flight, most probably in relation to display, as suggested by some previous studies.
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