Multivariate meta-analysis of brain-mass correlations in eutherian mammals

The general assumption that brain size differences are an adequate proxy for subtler differences in brain organization turned neurobiologists toward the question why some groups of mammals such as primates, elephants, an
The general assumption that brain size differences are an adequate proxy for subtler differences in brain organization turned neurobiologists toward the question why some groups of mammals such as primates, elephants, and whales have such remarkably large brains. In this meta-analysis, an extensive sample of eutherian mammals (115 species distributed in 14 orders) provided data about several different biological traits and measures of brain size such as absolute brain mass (AB), relative brain mass (RB; quotient from AB and body mass), and encephalization quotient (EQ). These data were analyzed by established multivariate statistics without taking specific phylogenetic information into account. Species with high AB tend to (1) feed on protein-rich nutrition, (2) have a long lifespan, (3) delayed sexual maturity, and (4) long and rare pregnancies with small litter sizes. Animals with high RB usually have (1) a short life span, (2) reach sexual maturity early, and (3) have short and frequent gestations. Moreover, males of species with high RB also have few potential sexual partners. In contrast, animals with high EQs have (1) a high number of potential sexual partners, (2) delayed sexual maturity, and (3) rare gestations with small litter sizes. Based on these correlations, we conclude that Eutheria with either high AB or high EQ occupy positions at the top of the network of food chains (high trophic levels). Eutheria of low trophic levels can develop a high RB only if they have small body masses.
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Metadaten
Author:Charlene Steinhausen, Lyuba Zehl, Michaela Haas-Rioth, Kerstin Morcinek, Wolfgang Walkowiak, Stefan Huggenberger
URN:urn:nbn:de:hebis:30:3-417226
DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fnana.2016.00091
ISSN:1662-5129
Pubmed Id:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=27746724
Parent Title (English):Frontiers in neuroanatomy
Publisher:Frontiers Research Foundation
Place of publication:Lausanne
Document Type:Article
Language:English
Year of Completion:2016
Date of first Publication:2016/09/30
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2016/10/20
Tag:EQ; brainmass; brainsize; clusteranalysis; eutheria; mammals; trophiclevel
Volume:10
Issue:91
Pagenumber:14
Note:
Copyright © 2016 Steinhausen, Zehl, Haas-Rioth, Morcinek, Walkowiak and Huggenberger. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ . The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
HeBIS PPN:425295249
Institutes:Medizin
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Biowissenschaften; Biologie
610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Sammlungen:Universitätspublikationen
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung 4.0

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