Morphometric integration in the rat (Rattus sp.) scapula

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Abstract

Morphometric integration was analysed in 19 anatomical measures taken on the scapula and humerus in a population of 519 rats. As hypothesized, genetic integration was the highest, the average phenotypic genetic, and environmental correlations being 0·53, 0·67 and 0·42, and the index of integration 0·56, 0·69 and 0·48. Phenotypic and genetic correlation matrices were most similar (correlation =+0.79), genetic and environmental matrices least similar (correlation =+0.49). The first unrotated vector produced from principal components analysis explained a high percentage of the total variation (from 50% in the environmental to 70% in the genetic solution), and was highly heritable in all cases. Rotated vectors defined two length, one width, and one height grouping in the phenotypic solution, these being explained largely in terms of muscle assemblages. The four vectors produced in the genetic solution were similar to those from the phenotypic ones, but were more functionally interpretable. The five vectors produced from the environmental correlations paralleled those from the phenotypic correlations with regard to the length, but not the width measures. The general concordance among appropriate vectors from all three solutions was reasonably high. Twelve of the 13 vectors, as well as several hypothetical ones. exhibited moderate to high heritabilities.

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