A Field Comes of Age: Geometric Morphometrics in the 21st Century

Date
2013-01-01
Authors
Adams, Dean
Rohlf, F. James
Slice, Dennis
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Publisher
Altmetrics
Authors
Adams, Dean
Person
Research Projects
Organizational Units
Journal Issue
Series
Abstract

Twenty years ago, Rohlf and Marcus proclaimed that a "revolution in morphometrics" was underway, where classic analyses based on sets of linear distances were being supplanted by geometric approaches making use of the coordinates of anatomical landmarks. Since that time the field of geometric morphometrics has matured into a rich and cohesive discipline for the study of shape variation and covariation. The development of the field is identified with the Procrustes paradigm, a methodological approach to shape analysis arising from the intersection of the statistical shape theory and analytical procedures for obtaining shape variables from landmark data. In this review we describe the Procrustes paradigm and the current methodological toolkit of geometric morphometrics. We highlight some of the theoretical advances that have occurred over the past ten years since our prior review (Adams et al., 2004), what types of anatomical structures are amenable to these approaches, and how they extend the reach of geometric morphometrics to more specialized applications for addressing particular biological hypotheses. We end with a discussion of some possible areas that are fertile ground for future development in the field.

Description

This article is from Hystrix 24 (2013): 7, doi:10.4404/hystrix-24.1-6283. Posted with permission.

Keywords
shape analysis, Procrustes analysis, statistics, morphology
Citation
DOI
Collections