Hallucal tarsometatarsal joint in Australopithecus afarensis

Am J Phys Anthropol. 1990 Jun;82(2):125-33. doi: 10.1002/ajpa.1330820202.


Hallucal tarsometatarsal joints from African pongids, modern humans, and Australopithecus afarensis are compared to investigate the anatomical and mechanical changes that accompanied the transition to terrestrial bipedality. Features analyzed include the articular orientation of the medial cuneiform, curvature of the distal articular surface of the medial cuneiform, and the articular configuration of the hallucal metatarsal proximal joint surface. Morphological characteristics of the hallucal tarsometatarsal joint unequivocally segregate quadrupedal pongids and bipedal hominids.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Fossils*
  • Gait
  • Gorilla gorilla / anatomy & histology
  • Hallux / anatomy & histology*
  • Hominidae / anatomy & histology*
  • Humans
  • Locomotion
  • Metatarsal Bones / anatomy & histology*
  • Paleontology*
  • Pan troglodytes / anatomy & histology
  • Tarsal Joints / anatomy & histology*