Morphometric estimation of torsional stiffness and strength in primate mandibles
Article first published online: 28 NOV 2006
Copyright © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Volume 132, Issue 2, pages 261–266, February 2007
How to Cite
Daegling, D. J. (2007), Morphometric estimation of torsional stiffness and strength in primate mandibles. Am. J. Phys. Anthropol., 132: 261–266. doi: 10.1002/ajpa.20508
- Issue published online: 21 DEC 2006
- Article first published online: 28 NOV 2006
- Manuscript Accepted: 8 AUG 2006
- Manuscript Received: 25 APR 2006
- NSF. Grant Numbers: BNS 8920592, BCS 0096037
In comparative studies of masticatory function and mandibular biomechanics, the mediolateral dimension of the postcanine corpus (corpus breadth) is commonly utilized as a measure of torsional stiffness from which relative torsional strength is inferred. The use of this dimension entails certain assumptions about corpus shape and cortical bone distribution that are invalid. When corpus breadth is related to an appropriate, empirically supported measure of torsional strength, it is revealed that this dimension has limited utility for inference of biomechanical competence under torsion. The use of linear dimensions to infer structural adaptations to specific loading regimes is problematic given that bone tissue is not optimally deployed to minimize strain levels arising from isolated loads. For the inference of the masticatory biomechanical environment, the more reasonable approach is to consider overall size of the corpus (i.e., cross-sectional area) for inference of intra- and inter-specific differences in masticatory forces. Am J Phys Anthropol, 2007 © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.