Anatomia | 2021

Evolutionary and terminological analysis of the flexor digitorum superficialis, interflexorii and palmaris longus muscles in kinkajou (Potos flavus) and crab‐eating racoon (Procyon cancrivorus)



The kinkajou (Potos flavus) and crab‐eating raccoon (Procyon cancrivorus) are carnivores belonging to the family Procyonidae, but both species are characterized by different types of locomotion. Differences can be found in the adaptations that these two species present in the forearm muscles, such as the flexor digitorum superficialis (FDS), palmaris longus (PL) and interflexorii (IF), which have been described confusingly in previous studies. Therefore, the aim of this study was to describe these muscles in both species together with their innervations to carry out an evolutionary and terminological analysis among carnivorans. Both thoracic limbs were dissected from five P. flavus and three P. cancrivorus that had died of natural causes in Wildlife Care Centers. Two PL muscles (m. palmaris longus lateralis, PLL, and m. palmaris longus medialis, PLM) were found in P. flavus, and the IF were the only superficial flexors of the digits, whereas P. cancrivorus presented the IF and two bellies homologous to the two PLs of P. flavus, where the homologous belly of the PLM sent tendons to digits II–IV. Therefore, it was considered as the FDS due to its similarity to other carnivorans, and the lateral belly is the only PL present in P. cancrivorus. The topology, attachments and innervation of these muscles in P. flavus and P. cancrivorus allowed homologies to be established, hypothesizing their evolutionary derivation from the FDS. It also allowed the differences among PL, FDS and IF muscles to be described, concluding that most carnivorans do not have a PL.

Volume 50
Pages 520 - 533
DOI 10.1111/ahe.12656
Language English
Journal Anatomia

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