A brief review of shape, form, and allometry in geometric morphometrics, with applications to human facial morphology
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Department of Theoretical Biology, University of Vienna, Althanstrasse 14, A-1090 Vienna
Department of Human Evolution, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Deutscher Platz 6, Deutscher Platz D-04107 Leipzig
Dept. of Anthropology, University of Vienna, Althanstrasse 14, A-1090 Vienna and Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research, Adolf Lorenz Gasse 2, A-3422, Altenberg
Dept. of Anthropology, University of Vienna, Althanstrasse 14, A-1090 Vienna
Publication date: 2013-05-28
Hystrix It. J. Mamm. 2013;24(1):59-66
We briefly and informally review the concepts of size, shape, and form and how they are estimated in geometric morphometrics using Procrustes analysis. We demonstrate how deformation grids and reconstructed shapes or forms can be used as powerful tools to visualize shape and form differences. Complex patterns of individual or group differences can be studied effectively by ordinations of shape space or form space. Allometry, the statistical relationship between size and shape, is estimated in geometric morphometrics by regression of the Procrustes shape coordinates on centroid size. We illustrate these methods by an application to human face shape. We reveal shape cues to body size in the adult male face, partly resembling ontogenetic allometry. Facial allometry might thus be an important confounding factor in studies of face perception and human mate choice.
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