They analysed the genomes of the South American opossum
and the Australian tammar wallaby, as well as the DNA of 20 other marsupials for a "jumping gene" called retroposons.
Many look similar to the North American opossum, with prehensile tails that are adapted to grasp branches.
Voss's work is helping to identify the diversity among South American opossum species.
Characterization of an unidentified Sarcocystis falcatula-like parasite from the South American opossum, Didelphis albiventris from Brazil.
Isolates of Sarcocystis falcatula-like organisms from South American opossums Didelphis marsupialis and Didelphis albiventris from Sao Paulo, Brazil.
The USA is already producing a draft sequence of a second marsupial -- the South American opossum
Similarly, in studies using the South American opossum
-- an animal model for melanoma -- a saturated fat diet produced fewer melanocytic tumors than a diet containing unsaturated fats, but had no effect on the development of squamous cell skin cancers.
Additionally several species of Oochoristica have been described from South American opossums
, including Didelphis marsnpialis.
Genetic evidence shows that a South American ancestor gave rise to all Australian marsupials, and that the South American opossums
were the earliest group to branch off from the other six marsupial clans.
The author of Walker's Mammals of the World, 5th and 6th editions, from which some of this material has been adapted, describes marsupial orders and distribution from American opossums
to Australian wallabies (pictured in b&w photos).