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Title   Scale morphology and squamation pattern of Guiyu oneiros provide new insights into early osteichthyan body plan
Authors   Xindong Cui
Corresponding Author   Min Zhu
Year   2019
Title of Journal   Scientific Reports
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Abstract   Scale morphology and squamation play an important role in the study of fish phylogeny and classification. However, as the scales of the earliest osteichthyans or bony fishes are usually found in a disarticulated state, research into squamation patterns and phylogeny has been limited. Here we quantitatively describe the scale morphology of the oldest articulated osteichthyan, the 425-million-year-old Guiyu oneiros, based on geometric morphometrics and high-resolution computed tomography. Based on the cluster analysis of the scales in the articulated specimens, we present a squamation pattern of Guiyu oneiros, which divides the body scales into 4 main belts, comprising 16 areas. The new pattern reveals that the squamation of early osteichthyans is more complicated than previously known, and demonstrates that the taxa near the crown osteichthyan node in late Silurian had a greater degree of squamation zonation compared to more advanced forms. This study offers an important reference for the classification of detached scales of early osteichthyans, provides new insights into the early evolution of osteichthyan scales, and adds to our understanding of the early osteichthyan body plan.
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Full Text Link   https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-019-40845-7https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-019-40845-7
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