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The Rise of Placental Mammals

Hardback
, 280 pages

24 halftones, 59 line drawings

ISBN:
9780801880223
February 2005
$110.00

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The Rise of Placental Mammals

Origins and Relationships of the Major Extant Clades

From shrews to blue whales, placental mammals are among the most diverse and successful vertebrates on the Earth. Arising sometime near the Late Cretaceous, this broad clade of mammals contains more than 1,000 genera and approximately 4,400 extant species. Although much studied, the origin and diversification of the placentals continue to be a source of debate.

Paleontologists Kenneth D. Rose and J. David Archibald have assembled the world's leading authorities to provide a comprehensive and up-to-date evolutionary history of placental mammals. Focusing on anatomical evidence, the contributors present an unbiased scientific account of the initial radiation and ordinal relationships of placental mammals, representing both the consensus and significant minority viewpoints. This book will be invaluable to paleontologists, evolutionary biologists, mammalogists, and students.

Contributors: J. David Archibald, San Diego State University; Robert J. Asher, Institut für Systematische Zoologie; Jonathan I. Bloch, University of Michigan; Douglas M. Boyer, University of Michigan; Daryl P. Domning, Howard University; Eduardo Eizirik, National Cancer Institute; Robert J. Emry, Smithsonian Institution; Jörg Erfurt, Martin-Luther-University; John J. Flynn, The Field Museum; Timothy J. Gaudin, University of Tennessee; Emmanuel Gheerbrant, Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle; Philip D. Gingerich, The University of Michigan; Patricia A. Holroyd, University of California, Berkeley; J. J. Hooker, The Natural History Museum; Léo F. Laporte, University of California, Santa Cruz; Jin Meng, American Museum of Natural History;William J. Murphy, National Cancer Institute; Jason C. Mussell, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; Michael J. Novacek, American Museum of Natural History; Stephen J. O'Brien, National Cancer Institute; Kenneth D. Rose, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; Guillermo W. Rougier, University of Louisville; Eric J. Sargis, Yale University; Mary T. Silcox, University of Winnipeg; Nancy B. Simmons, American Museum of Natural History; Mark S. Springer, University of California, Riverside; Gerhard Storch, Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg; Pascal Tassy, Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle; Jessica M. Theodor, Illinois State Museum; Gina D. Wesley, The University of Chicago; John R. Wible, Carnegie Museum of Natural History; André Wyss, University of California, Santa Barbara.

Kenneth D. Rose is a professor at the Center for Functional Anatomy and Evolution at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and a research associate at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., and the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh. J. David Archibald is Professor of Biology and Curator of Mammals in the Department of Biology at San Diego State University. In addition he is a Research Associate at the San Diego Museum of Natural History and the University of California Museum of Paleontology, Berkeley. For the past 10 years he has directed the URBAC Paleontological Expeditions to the Kyzylkum Desert, Uzbekistan, where he and his colleagues search for early placental mammals.

" Placental Mammals achieves a balance between molecular work, on the one hand, and anatomical and paleontological work, on the other. Influential figures of twentieth-century studies of placental mammalian phylogenetics are fulsomely acknowledged, particularly W. K. Gregory and G. G. Simpson... A complete treatment of uniformly high quality has emerged... A tribute to the vision and dynamism of the editors, and a vindication of their choice of contributors... This timely volume somehow represents that biological cliché: a new synthesis."

"The volume should be welcome bedside reading for all mammal systematicists and anyone interested in the evolution of mammals."

"An excellent summary of current thinking about the higher levels of mammalian evolution."

"Not only an up-to-date textbook, but a detailed source of reference for all readers interested in mammals and their evolution."

"I give this book a glowing review and a high recommendation."

"I recommend the book to all those interested in the evolutionary history of placentals."

"An excellent reference on the current state of knowledge and issues surrounding the origin, diversification, and phylogenetic position of placental mammalian clades."

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