The pelvic morphology, and whether the pelvic fin is present or absent in the earliest jawed vertebrates are key in interpreting the origin of vertebrate paired fins. Parayunnanolepis xitunensis, an antiarch placoderm from the Early Devonian of Yunnan, South China, was previously described to possess the earliest evidence of both dermal and endoskeletal pelvic girdles, presumably for the attachment of the pelvic fins. Here, we redescribe the pelvic region of the holotype based on high-resolution computed tomographic data. Instead of having two large plates previously designated as dermal pelvic girdles, Parayunnanolepis possesses three pairs of lateral pelvic plates, and one large oval median pelvic plate. The paired pelvic plates are flat ventral plates, and differ from other dermal pelvic girdles in lacking a dorsal extension. There is no definitive evidence for the presence of an endoskeletal pelvic girdle in Parayunnanolepis, although the possibility cannot be ruled out. A comparison of the dermal pelvic plates in various jawed stem-gnathostomes suggests the presence of both paired and median pelvic plates is shared by different lineages and might be plesiomorphic. The jawed stem-gnathostomes may have recruited the ventral dermal skeleton of the post-thoracic body into different functional units.
摘要：A new genus and species of the family Eugaleaspidae (Eugaleaspiformes, Galeaspida), Xitunaspis magnus gen. et sp. nov., is described from the Lower Devonian Xitun Formation in Qujing, Yunnan Province, China. The new genus displays the diagnostic characters of the Eugaleaspidae, including a slit-like median dorsal opening, no inner cornual process, developed median dorsal canals, and only three pairs of lateral transverse canals extending from lateral dorsal canals. Different from the other eugaleaspids, X. magnus possesses a large headshield with thick dermal bone and a more plesiomorphic sensory canal system. The phylogenetic analysis of the Galeaspida reveals that Xitunaspis clusters with Dunyu and Eugaleaspis to form a monophyletic clade Eugaleaspidae Liu, 1965, and has a closer relationship with Dunyu than Eugaleaspis by sharing the thick dermal bone of the headshield. The new finding represents the first convincing fossil record of the Eugaleaspiformes in the middle Lochkovian Xitun Formation and adds to our knowledge about the morphology of eugaleaspiforms and the evolutionary pattern of the sensory canal system in the Eugaleaspiformes and even Galeaspida.
摘要：The new specimens of the largest eugaleaspiform Nochelaspis maeandrine are redescribed from two localities of the Xishancun Formation in Qujing City, Yunnan Province, southwestern China. Nochelaspis is most suggestive of Yunnanogaleaspis from the same horizon, but differs in its slit-like median dorsal opening (length/width>6), much stronger inner cornual process, coarse stellate ornamentation, and the serrations along the edges of the median dorsal opening and headshield. The new findings reveal the morphological details on the ventral side of the headshield as well. The oralobranchial fenestra is covered by a large dermal ventral plate, which is decorated with dense, tiny granular tubercles, and aligned with six pairs of separated, large, and circular branchial openings. This condition is different from that of osteostracans, in which the oralobranchial fenestra is covered by numerous minute scales or larger dermal platelets, and the branchial openings are slit-shaped and covered by small skin flaps somewhat like those of elasmobranchs. However, the branchial openings of galeaspids and osteostracans are both located ventrally as in modern rays, indicating a benthic lifestyle dwelling on sandy or muddy substrates in a quiet marine environment.
摘要：Abstract Here the posterior cranial portion of the tetrapodomorph Tungsenia from the Lower Devonian (Pragian, ~409 million years ago) of Yunnan, southwest China, is reported for the first time. The pattern of posterior skull roof and the morphology of the otoccipital region of the neurocranium are described in detail, providing precious insight into the combination of cranial characters of the earliest known tetrapodomorph to date. The posterior cranium of Tungseniadisplays a mosaic of features previously linked either to basal dipnomorphs such as Youngolepis(e.g., the well-developed subjugular ridge, the strong adotic process, and the poorly developed fossa bridgei) or to typical tetrapodomorphs (e.g., the lateral dorsal aortae commenced from the median dorsal aorta postcranially). The independent ventral arcual plate is also found in the advanced tetrapodomorph Eusthenopteron. The new endocranial material of Tungsenia further fills in the morphological gap between Tetrapodomorpha (tetrapod lineage) and Dipnomorpha (lungfish lineage) and unveils the sequence of character acquisition during the initial diversification of the tetrapod lineage. The new phylogenetic analysis strongly supports the basalmost position of Tungsenia amongst the tetrapod lineage.
摘要：New findings of galeaspids (Agnatha) including Altigibbaspis huiqingae gen. et sp. nov., an indeterminate polybranchiaspid, Eugaleaspis changi, and Nanpanaspis microculus are described from the lower part of the Xishancun Formation (early Lochkovian, Early Devonian) near the northeast entrance of Liaokuo Park, Qujing City, Yunnan Province, China. The Polybranchiaspis-like new genus is characterized by a blade-like median dorsal ridge on the dorsal side of head-shield. The morphological disparity of the median dorsal ridge and spine in galeaspids suggests that these structures functioned more than providing a hydrodynamic stability. We assume that a high upright and compressed spine may render galeaspid fishes an apparently larger size as seen by a predator, and a blade-like median dorsal ridge may accomplish a defense against the claws of large sea scorpions. Nanpanaspis is peculiar in bearing two short laterally projecting processes on each side of the head-shield, and its phylogenetic relationship is discussed based on different interpretations on the homology of these processes. Considering the unique morphology of Nanpanaspis, and its early occurrence among the Huananaspiformes, we assign Nanpanaspis in the monogeneric family Nanpanaspidae to represent an early branch of the Huananaspiformes. 本文描述了云南曲靖早泥盆世西山村组盔甲鱼类(无颌类)的新发现，包括一新属、新种——惠清驼背鱼(Altigibbaspis huiqingae gen. et sp. nov.), 一件属种未定的多鳃鱼科标本，以及张氏真盔甲鱼(Eugaleaspis changi)和小眼南盘鱼(Nanpanaspis microculus)的新材料。驼背鱼在很多方面跟多鳃鱼都非常相似，但头甲背面具一特征性的驼背状隆起，其上有一刀刃状的中背脊。中背脊和中背棘在盔甲鱼类里的形态分异度表明：它们除了能够提供游泳方向稳定性外，可能衍生出了一些附加的功能，例如直立高耸的中背棘能使盔甲鱼在捕食者眼里具有了恐吓性，刀刃状的中背脊可能也起到一些防御的作用。南盘鱼头甲侧缘具有两对非常奇特的侧向延伸的突起；通过对这两对侧突同源性的比较，讨论了南盘鱼的潜在系统分类位置。鉴于南盘鱼奇特的形态，以及它在华南鱼目中相对较早的出现时代，建议暂时把南盘鱼放到一个单属科南盘鱼科，代表了华南鱼目早期分出来的一个支系。