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Human hand-walkers: five siblings who never stood up

Humphrey, Nicholas, Skoyles, John R. and Keynes, Roger (2005) Human hand-walkers: five siblings who never stood up. . Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Science, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

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Human beings begin life as quadrupeds, crawling on all fours, but none has ever been known to retain this gait and develop it into a proficient replacement for adult bipedality. We report the case of a family in which five siblings, who suffer from a rare form of cerebellar ataxia, are still quadrupeds as adults - walking and running on their feet and wrists. We describe the remarkable features of this gait, discuss how it has developed in the members of this family, and consider whether a similar gait may have been used by human ancestors.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: Published 2005 © London School of Economics and Political Science. LSE has developed LSE Research Online so that users may access research output of the School. Copyright © and Moral Rights for the papers on this site are retained by the individual authors and/or other copyright owners. Users may download and/or print one copy of any article(s) in LSE Research Online to facilitate their private study or for non-commercial research. You may not engage in further distribution of the material or use it for any profit-making activities or any commercial gain. You may freely distribute the URL ( of the LSE Research Online website.
Divisions: CPNSS
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2006
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2023 23:02

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