Speculative reconstruction of Cimolestes, copyright Steve White.

Belongs within: Boreosphenida.
Contains: Adapisoriculidae, Zhelestidae, Asioryctitheria, Procerberinae, Leptictida, Atlantogenata, Boreoeutheria.

The Eutheria are a group of mammals representing the total group of placental mammals (Placentalia), living species of which are distinguished from other mammals by the live birth of offspring after their extended development in the mother, nourished by a well-developed placenta. Because this character is related to soft-body features only, it is unknown where in the eutherian stem the modern placenta evolved; stem eutherians may have resembled crown placentals in their reproductive biology or retained more plesiomorphic features. Eutherians are first definitively known from the early Cretaceous; the late Jurassic Juramaia sinensis, originally described as a eutherian, may have been a stem therian (marsupials+placentals). Phylogenetic analysis suggests that all known fossil Mesozoic eutherians lie outside the placental crown group (Wible et al. 2007). Most early eutherians were generalised, probably insectivorous forms. Examples include Acristatherium yanensis, described from a partial skull from the Early Cretaceous (Aptian) of China. Murtoilestes abramovi is known from two molars from the lower Cretaceous of Transbaikalia (Russia). Montanalestes keebleri is known from a partial lower jaw from the Albian of Montana. The mid-Cretaceous (Cenomanian) of Uzbekistan has provided such species as Sheikhdzheilia rezvyii and Eozhelestes mangit. Eozhelestes may be related to the late Cretaceous Paranyctoides, species of which are known from both Asia and North America.

The North American genus Cimolestes has been recognised from the Cretaceous to the Palaeocene, making it potentially an independent survival from the lineage leading to crown placentals of the end-Cretaceous extinction event.

<==Eutheria [Bunotheria, Cimolesta, Cimolestidae, Leptictimorpha, Mesodonta, Tupaioidea]
    |  i. s.: Otlestes meiman AAE01
    |--Acristatherium yanensis LY11, GP11
    `--+--Murtoilestes Averianov & Skutchas 2001 GP11, FN03
       |    `--M. abramovi WR07
       `--+--Montanalestes Cifelli 1999 WR07, FN03
          |    `--M. keebleri WR07
          `--+--Adapisoriculidae GP11
             `--+--Sheikhdzheilia rezvyii HUG17, WR07
                `--+--Zhelestidae HUG17
                   `--+--+--Eozhelestes mangit WR07
                      |  `--Paranyctoides HUG17
                      |       |--P. aralensis WR07
                      |       |--P. maleficus WR07
                      |       |--P. megakeros WR07
                      |       |--P. quadrans HUG17
                      |       `--P. sternbergi WR07
                      `--+--+--Batodon Marsh 1892 HUG17, V67
                         |  |    `--B. tenuis WR07
                         |  `--Maelestes Wible, Rougier et al. 2007 WR07
                         |       `--*M. gobiensis Wible, Rougier et al. 2007 WR07
                         |--Bobolestes zenge HUG17, WR07
                         |--Asioryctitheria HUG17
                         `--+--Cimolestes Marsh 1889 HUG17, FN03 [incl. Nyssodon Simpson 1927 V67]
                            |    |--*C. incisus Marsh 1889 V66
                            |    |--C. cerberoides Lillegraven 1969 GI06
                            |    |--C. cuspulus Gheerbrant 1992 GI06
                            |    |--C. lucasi D07
                            |    |--C. magnus Clemens & Russell 1965 GI06
                            |    |--C. propalaeoryctes WR07
                            |    |--*Nyssodon’ punctidens Simpson 1927 V66
                            |    `--C. stirtoni WR07
                            `--+--Eoryctes Thewissen & Gingerich 1989 HUG17, AM02
                               |    `--E. melanus WR07
                               |--Puercolestes Reynolds 1936 HUG17, V67
                               |    `--*P. simpsoni Reynolds 1936 V66 [=Cimolestes simpsoni WR07]
                               |--Betonnia tsosia HUG17
                               `--+--+--Chacopterygus minutus HUG17
                                  |  `--Procerberinae HUG17
                                  `--+--+--Purgatorius HUG17
                                     |  |    |--P. coracis OB13
                                     |  |    |--P. janisae WR07
                                     |  |    `--P. unio WR07
                                     |  `--+--Oxyprimus WR07
                                     |     |    |--O. erikseni WR07
                                     |     |    `--O. galadrielae Van Valen 1978 MC00
                                     |     `--Protungulatum Sloan & Van Valen 1965 HUG17, D07
                                     |          |--P. coombsi OB13
                                     |          |--P. donnae Sloan & Van Valen 1965 MC00
                                     |          |--P. gorgon WR07
                                     |          |--P. mckeeveri WR07
                                     |          `--P. sloani D07
                                     `--+--Leptictida HUG17
                                        `--+--Prodiacodon Matthew 1929 HUG17, SFY02 (see below for synonymy)
                                           |    |--*P. puercensis (Matthew 1918) V67
                                           |    |--P. concordiarcensis Simpson 1935 S35
                                           |    |--P. crustulum OB13
                                           |    `--P. tauricinerei HUG17
                                           `--Placentalia (see below for synonymy) OB13
                                                |  i. s.: Ernanodonta S03
                                                |           |--Ernanodon Ding 1987 [Ernanodontidae] S03
                                                |           |    `--*E. antelios Ding 1979 S03
                                                |           `--Asiabradypus Nessov 1987 S03
                                                |                `--A. incompositus Nesson 1987 S03
                                                |         Plioceros dehlini MHL03
                                                |         Colodon occidentalis MHL03
                                                |         Tingamarra Godthelp, Archer et al. 1992 LA02
                                                |           `--*T. porterorum Godthelp, Archer et al. 1992 LA02
                                                |         Kharmerungulatum Prasad, Verma et al. 2007 PV07
                                                |           `--*K. vanvaleni Prasad, Verma et al. 2007 PV07
                                                |         Parapodemus Scaub 1938 P04
                                                |         Germanomys Heller 1936 P04
                                                |         Blackia Mein 1970 P04
                                                |         Sulimskia Reumer 1984 P04
                                                |         Stachomys Kowalski 1960 P04
                                                |         Smithozapus Sulimski 1962 P04
                                                |         Pliopetes Kretzoi 1959 P04
                                                |         Kowalskia Fahlbusch 1969 P04
                                                |         Prospalax Méhely 1908 P04
                                                |         Paenelimnoecus Baudelot 1972 P04
                                                |         Alloblarinella Storch 1995 P04
                                                |         Orientalomys De Bruijn & Van der Meulen 1975 P04
                                                |         Archaeodesmana Topachevskij & Pashkov 1983 P04
                                                |         Blancomys Van de Weerd, Adrover et al. 1977 P04
                                                |         Stephanomys Schaub 1938 P04
                                                |         Castyllomys Michaux 1969 P04
                                                |         Occitanomys Michaux 1969 P04
                                                |         Pseudomeriones Schaub 1934 P04
                                                |         Spermophilinus De Bruijn & Mein 1968 P04
                                                |           `--S. bredai M-SK04
                                                |         Keramidomys Hartenberger 1966 P04
                                                |         Tylodon Gervais 1848 V66
                                                |         Palaeopeltis inornatus A05
                                                |--Atlantogenata HUG17
                                                `--Boreoeutheria HUG17

Placentalia [Altungulata, Anagalida, Anicanodonta, Bruta, Cheiroptères, Dilambdodonta, Edentata, Educabilia, Eparctocyona, Epitheria, Exafroplacentalia, Gyrencephala, Menotyphla, Pantomesaxonia, Pedimanes, Unguiculata, Ungulata, Ungulatomorpha, Volitantia] OB13

Prodiacodon Matthew 1929 HUG17, SFY02 [incl. Palaeolestes Matthew 1918 (preoc.) V67]

*Type species of generic name indicated


[A05] Ameghino, F. 1905. Les édentés fossiles de France et d'Allemagne. Anales del Museo Nacional de Buenos Aires, serie 3, 6: 175–250.

[AAE01] Archibald, J. D., A. O. Averianov & E. G. Ekdale. 2001. Late Cretaceous relatives of rabbits, rodents, and other extant eutherian mammals. Nature 414: 62–65.

[AM02] Asher, R. J., M. C. McKenna, R. J. Emry, A. R. Tabrum & D. G. Kron. 2002. Morphology and relationships of Apternodus and other extinct, zalambdodont, placental mammals. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 273: 1–117.

[D07] Dixon, D. 2007. The Complete Illustrated Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs & Prehistoric Creatures. Hermes House: London.

[FN03] Fox, R. C., & B. G. Naylor. 2003. A Late Cretaceous taeniodont (Eutheria, Mammalia) from Alberta, Canada. Neues Jahrbuch für Geologie und Paläontologie—Abhandlungen 229 (3): 393–420.

[GI06] Gheerbrant, E., M. Iarochene, M. Amaghzaz & B. Bouya. 2006. Early African hyaenodontid mammals and their bearing on the origin of the Creodonta. Geological Magazine 143 (4): 475–489.

[GP11] Goswami, A., G. V. R. Prasad, P. Upchurch, D. M. Boyer, E. R. Seiffert, O. Verma, E. Gheerbrant & J. J. Flynn. 2011. A radiation of arboreal basal eutherian mammals beginning in the Late Cretaceous of India. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 108 (39): 16333–16338.

[HUG17] Halliday, T. J. D., P. Upchurch & A. Goswami. 2017. Resolving the relationships of Paleocene placental mammals. Biological Reviews 92 (1): 521–550.

[LA02] Long, J., M. Archer, T. Flannery & S. Hand. 2002. Prehistoric Mammals of Australia and New Guinea: One Hundred Million Years of Evolution. University of New South Wales Press: Sydney.

[MHL03] Meng, J., Y. Hu & C. Li. 2003. The osteology of Rhombomylus (Mammalia, Glires): implications for phylogeny and evolution of Glires. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 275: 1–247.

[M-SK04] Moyà-Solà, S., M. Köhler, D. M. Alba, I. Casanovas-Vilar & J. Galindo. 2004. Pierolapithecus catalaunicus, a new Middle Miocene great ape from Spain. Science 306: 1339–1344.

[MC00] Muizon, C. de, & R. L. Cifelli. 2000. The “condylarths” (archaic Ungulata, Mammalia) from the early Palaeocene of Tiupampa (Bolivia): Implications on the origin of the South American ungulates. Geodiversitas 22 (1): 47–150.

[OB13] O'Leary, M. A., J. I. Bloch, J. J. Flynn, T. J. Gaudin, A. Giallombardo, N. P. Giannini, S. L. Goldberg, B. P. Kraatz, Z.-X. Luo, J. Meng, X. Ni, M. J. Novacek, F. A. Perini, Z. S. Randall, G. W. Rougier, E. J. Sargis, M. T. Silcox, N. B. Simmons, M. Spaulding, P. M. Velazco, M. Weksler, J. R. Wible & A. L. Cirranello. 2013. The placental mammal ancestor and the post-K–Pg radiation of placentals. Science 339: 662–667.

[P04] Popov, V. V. 2004. Pliocene small mammals (Mammalia, Lipotyphla, Chiroptera, Lagomorpha, Rodentia) from Muselievo (north Bulgaria). Geodiversitas 26 (3): 403–491.

[PV07] Prasad, G. V. R., O. Verma, A. Sahni, V. Parmar & A. Khosla. 2007. A Cretaceous hoofed mammal from India. Science 318: 937.

[SFY02] Scott, C. S., R. C. Fox & G. P. Youzwyshyn. 2002. New earliest Tiffanian (late Paleocene) mammals from Cochrane 2, southwestern Alberta, Canada. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 47: 691–704.

[S35] Simpson, G. G. 1935. New Paleocene mammals from the Fort Union of Montana. Proceedings of the United States National Museum 83 (2981): 221–244.

[S03] Storch, G. 2003. Fossil Old World “edentates” (Mammalia). Senckenbergiana Biologica 83: 51–60.

[V66] Van Valen, L. 1966. Deltatheridia, a new order of mammals. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 132 (1): 1–126.

[V67] Van Valen, L. 1967. New Paleocene insectivores and insectivore classification. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 135 (5): 217–284.

[WR07] Wible, J. R., G. W. Rougier, M. J. Novacek & R. J. Asher. 2007. Cretaceous eutherians and Laurasian origin for placental mammals near the K/T boundary. Nature 447: 1003–1006.

Last updated: 21 August 2018.

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