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Inter- A nd Intraspecific Variations in the Pectoral Muscles of Common Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), Bonobos (Pan paniscus), and Humans (Homo sapiens)

Jan 1, 2018

We have analyzed anatomic variations in the pectoralis major and pectoralis minor muscles of common chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and bonobos (Pan paniscus) and compared them to anatomic variations in these muscles in humans (Homo sapiens). We have macroscopically dissected these muscles in six adult Pan troglodytes, five Pan paniscus of ages ranging from fetus to adult, and five adult Homo sapiens. Although Pan troglodytes are thought to lack a separate pectoralis abdominis muscle, we have identified this muscle in three of the Pan troglodytes; none of the Pan paniscus, however, had this muscle. We have also found deep supernumerary fascicles in the pectoralis major of two Pan troglodytes and all five Pan paniscus. In all six Pan troglodytes, the pectoralis minor was inserted at the supraspinatus tendon, while, in Pan paniscus and Homo sapiens, it was inserted at the coracoid process of the scapula. Some of the anatomic features and variations of these muscles in common chimpanzees and bonobos are similar to those found in humans, therefore enhancing our knowledge of primate comparative anatomy and evolution and also shedding light on several clinical issues.

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