from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Correspondence between parts or organs arising from evolutionary convergence.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The quality of being homoplastic; agreement in form and structure without community of origin, as of organs or parts of two different organs: opposed to homogeny: correlated with analogy or heterology as distinguished from homology in biological senses.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Biol.) See homogeny.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A correspondence between the parts or organs of different species acquired as the result of parallel evolution or convergence.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • The amount of homoplasy character states which evolved independently, as might occur occasionally with pseudogenes can be estimated, and we can tell whether or not we are close or far from a situation in which there is so much homoplasy that no phylogenetic structure is statistically supported.

    If and only if Cornelius Hunter made sense, then... - The Panda's Thumb

  • Partly because of my reading-up on other areas of direct interest (like cryptic diversity [see previous post], the discovery of new species, declines in global biodiversity, Cretaceous biogeography, radical homoplasy, polymorphism, and evolutionary reversals), I am returning again and again to the salamander literature.

    Archive 2006-03-01

  • Morphological homoplasy, life history evolution, and historical biogeography of plethodontid salamanders inferred from complete mitochondrial genomes.

    Archive 2006-03-01

  • Extreme morphological and ecological homoplasy in tropical salamanders.

    Archive 2006-03-01

  • These exceptions have been dealt with in one of two ways – first in some cases it can be argued that there is insufficient amount of sequence to rigorously support the true branch relationships i.e. sequence noise or homoplasy is hiding the true pattern or alternatively, these are informational genes that also have been involved in HGT events.

    The Last Universal Common Ancestor - The Panda's Thumb

  • Serial homology, for instance, was a case of homoplasy.

    Form and Function A Contribution to the History of Animal Morphology

  • For this relationship Mr. Bay Lankester has proposed the term "homoplasy."

    On the Genesis of Species

  • Wake, whose interest is homoplasy - the independent origin of similar shapes and structures - latest science and technology news stories

  • Most of the character conflicts in the data are within the separate sets, and only 2. 33-4.19 % increased homoplasy was found in the total data set including all taxa.

    PLoS ONE Alerts: New Articles

  • Using a new scoring algorithm, RawGeno, we show that scoring errors - in particular "bin oversplitting" (i.e. when variant sizes of the same AFLP marker are not considered as homologous) and "technical homoplasy" (i.e. when two AFLP markers that differ slightly in size are mistakenly considered as being homologous) - induce a loss of discriminatory power, decrease the robustness of results and, in extreme cases, introduce erroneous information in genetic structure analyses.

    BioMed Central - Latest articles


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  • Homoplasy occurs when characters are similar, but are not derived from a common ancestor. The characters are said to be homoplastious. If the characters were similar and were derived from a common ancestor, they would be homologous. Homoplasies that are due to convergent evolution are termed analogies.

    I love this word even if working in phylogenetics is my nightmare!!!

    February 8, 2008

  • The adjective is homoplasious or homoplastic, the former sometimes being preferred because homoplastic also refers to transplantation of tissue from one individual to another of the same species.

    February 9, 2008

  • I think the right one (at least the most used in scientific literature)is homoplasic but I reported the definition that I found in EvoWiki: I'm Italian so I don't trust too much in my English!!!

    February 9, 2008

  • "Homoplasic" gets about 600 hits in Google Scholar, versus about 2200 for "homoplasious" and 100 for "homoplasous", another contender. ("Homoplastious" is not represented.) "Homoplastic" gets 4900, but maybe 75% of those pertain to tissue transplantion. Google Scholar is biased toward medical literature, so it's hard to tell if the sample is representative.

    February 9, 2008