Ontogeny of limb force distribution in squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis): insights into the mechanical bases of primate hind limb dominance.

Title

Ontogeny of limb force distribution in squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis): insights into the mechanical bases of primate hind limb dominance.

Creator

Young Jesse W

Publisher

Journal of human evolution

Date

2012
2012-04

Description

The distribution of peak vertical forces between the forelimbs and the hind limbs is one of the key traits distinguishing primate quadrupedal locomotion from that of other mammals. Whereas most mammals generate greater peak vertical forelimb forces, primates generate greater peak vertical hind limb forces. At the ultimate level, hind limb dominance in limb force distribution is typically interpreted as an adaptation to facilitate fine-branch arboreality. However, the proximate biomechanical bases for primate limb force distribution remain controversial. Three models have been previously proposed. The Center of Mass (COM) Position model attributes primates' unique mode of limb loading to differences in the position of the whole-body COM relative to the hands and feet. The Active Weight Shift model asserts that primates actively redistribute body weight to their hind limbs by pitching the trunk up via the activation of hind limb retractor muscles. Finally, the Limb Compliance model argues that primates selectively mitigate forelimb forces by maintaining a compliant forelimb and a flat shoulder trajectory. Here, a detailed dataset of ontogenetic changes in morphology and locomotor mechanics in Bolivian squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis) was employed as a model system to evaluate each of these proposed models in turn. Over the first 10 months of life, squirrel monkeys transitioned from forelimb dominant infants to hind limb dominant juveniles, a change that was precipitated by decreases in peak vertical forelimb forces and increases in peak vertical hind limb forces. Results provided some support for all three of the models, although the COM Position and Active Weight Shift models were most strongly supported by the data. Overall, this study suggests that primates may use a variety of biomechanical strategies to achieve hind limb dominance in limb force distribution.

Subject

*Locomotion; Age Factors; Animals; Biological; Biomechanical Phenomena; Female; Leg/anatomy & histology/*growth & development/*physiology; Models; Saimiri/anatomy & histology/*growth & development/*physiology; Videotape Recording; Weight-Bearing

Rights

Article information provided for research and reference use only. All rights are retained by the journal listed under publisher and/or the creator(s).

Pages

473–485

Issue

4

Volume

62

Citation

Young Jesse W, “Ontogeny of limb force distribution in squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis): insights into the mechanical bases of primate hind limb dominance.,” NEOMED Bibliography Database, accessed February 27, 2021, https://neomed.omeka.net/items/show/3657.

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