Photopigment Polymorphism in Prosimians and the Origins of Primate Trichromacy
This chapter describes a study of photopigment polymorphism in prosimians. A noninvasive electrophysiological technique, electroretinogram (ERG) flicker photometry was used to measure spectral sensitivity in three adult (one male, two female) black and white ruffed lemurs (Varecia variegata variegata). The pigment polymorphism observed in black and white ruffed lemurs predicts variations in colour vision. Two of the animals could be dichromatic, each with distinctly different colour vision characteristics, while the third (a female) has the photopigment basis for trichromacy. With the recent evidence that prosimians have cone opsin gene and photopigment polymorphisms, it seems clear that the idea that only anthropoid primates can be trichromatic was mistaken. At the same time, it is equally clear that the number of prosimians potentially enjoying trichromacy may be limited.
Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.