ana·​gen·​e·​sis | \ ˌa-nə-ˈje-nə-səs How to pronounce anagenesis (audio) \

Definition of anagenesis

: evolutionary change producing a single lineage in which one taxon replaces another without branching — compare cladogenesis

Examples of anagenesis in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And that overlap would imply that A. anamensis could not have evolved into A. afarensis by means of anagenesis. Kate Wong, Scientific American, "The Face of the Earliest Human Ancestor, Revealed," 7 Dec. 2019 Based on the ages and characteristics of the available fossils, paleoanthropologists thought A. anamensis gave rise to A. afarensis through an evolutionary process termed anagenesis, in which one species transforms into another. Kate Wong, Scientific American, "The Face of the Earliest Human Ancestor, Revealed," 7 Dec. 2019 But the case for cladogenesis over anagenesis hinges entirely on that 3.9-million-year-old forehead bone from Belohdelie belonging to A. afarensis—no other A. afarensis remains recovered thus far are that old. Kate Wong, Scientific American, "The Face of the Earliest Human Ancestor, Revealed," 7 Dec. 2019 This challenges the long and widely-held view that Lucy’s species evolved gradually from A. anamensis without branching of the evolutionary line – a process known as anagenesis. Hester Hanegraef, Quartz Africa, "The skull of humanity’s oldest known ancestor is changing our understanding of evolution," 7 Sep. 2019 A new tyrannosaur with evidence with evidence for anagenesis and crocodile-like facial sensory system. Darren Naish, Scientific American Blog Network, "The Sensitive Face of a Big Predatory Dinosaur," 16 June 2017 According to Horner’s paper, this linear sort of evolution—called anagenesis—possibly could have resulted in the iconic Tyrannosaurus rex. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "This Is Our Best Look Yet at a Tyrannosaur’s Face," 30 Mar. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'anagenesis.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of anagenesis

circa 1882, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for anagenesis

New Latin

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The first known use of anagenesis was circa 1882

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Cite this Entry

“Anagenesis.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 May. 2021.

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