Dental asymmetry as a measure of environmental stress in the Ticuna Indians of Colombia

Edward Harris, Martin T. Nweeia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

64 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The magnitude of fluctuating dental asymmetry is reported for a marginally Westernized, horticultural Indian group, the Ticuna of the Regíon Amazonas, Colombia. Asymmetry is lower than in other Amerindian and Eskimo groups reported to date, which accords with the adequacy and reliability of traditional food sources and complements the claim that protein intake is at or above minimum requirements. Partitioning the variation by sex, arcade, dimension, and tooth discloses several statistically significant effects. Among these: 1) females are proportionately more asymmetric than males; 2) maxillary teeth are more asymmetric than their mandibular counterparts; 3) the mesiodistal dimension is less canalized than buccolingual width in the maxilla, but is more asymmetric in the mandible; and 4) the pattern of asymmetry corresponds closely with the morphogenetic gradients within each tooth field, suggesting that bilaterality provides an additional measure for disclosing underlying genetic and ontogenetic patterns in the dentition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)133-142
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Physical Anthropology
Volume53
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1980

Fingerprint

Colombia
asymmetry
Tooth
Amazona
Inuits
Dentition
Maxilla
Group
Mandible
food
Complement System Proteins
Food

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anatomy
  • Anthropology

Cite this

Dental asymmetry as a measure of environmental stress in the Ticuna Indians of Colombia. / Harris, Edward; Nweeia, Martin T.

In: American Journal of Physical Anthropology, Vol. 53, No. 1, 01.01.1980, p. 133-142.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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