Presentation Title

Three-Dimensional Geometric Morphometric Sex Determination of the Human Pubic Bone

Authors' Names

Katherine Baca

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Artist Statement

Best of GradCon Award Winner: Oral Presentations - STEM

Geometric morphometrics is the analysis of shape, and this method has become more popular in anthropology as three-dimensional data and research become more available. This research provides a new method utilizing 3-D geometric morphometric analysis to determine sex from the human pubic bone. Previous methods of sex determination rely heavily on the visual analysis of bone by the expert forensic anthropologist; these methods generally result in accuracy rates of about 90-95%. Creating a metric method adds credibility and statistical accuracy to the practice of sex determination. This study used a sample of N=378 individual pubic bones from the University of New Mexico Maxwell Documented Collection. Eight landmarks were digitized on each individual bone using a Microscribe Digitizer. Results from the Principle Components Analysis provide promising clustering between male and female groups, as well as indications that the method may be ancestry-specific, and that parity may have an effect on the shape of female pubic bones. The Discriminant Function analysis of the training data set resulted in 96.2% accuracy in predicting the correct sex, and the testing data set resulted in 94.6% accuracy (p This research is groundbreaking within the field of forensic anthropology because refining the use of the method to a small portion of bone which can accurately predict the sex of an individual greatly increases the applicability toward real forensic casework. Very rarely is a forensic anthropologist presented with an entire human skeleton to analyze; much more often we are presented with fragments which must be analyzed to provide as much information as possible. Improving this method so that it is accurate on small portions of bone is a huge advantage to the forensic anthropologist, especially if they must testify as an expert in court. It is important to back up all estimations and information with metrically determined results; this method provides a new and very accurate metric method. As this method continues to be validated on more samples in the future, it could change the way unknown human remains are analyzed and identified.

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Feb 28th, 2:10 PM Feb 28th, 2:25 PM

Three-Dimensional Geometric Morphometric Sex Determination of the Human Pubic Bone

UC 333

Best of GradCon Award Winner: Oral Presentations - STEM

Geometric morphometrics is the analysis of shape, and this method has become more popular in anthropology as three-dimensional data and research become more available. This research provides a new method utilizing 3-D geometric morphometric analysis to determine sex from the human pubic bone. Previous methods of sex determination rely heavily on the visual analysis of bone by the expert forensic anthropologist; these methods generally result in accuracy rates of about 90-95%. Creating a metric method adds credibility and statistical accuracy to the practice of sex determination. This study used a sample of N=378 individual pubic bones from the University of New Mexico Maxwell Documented Collection. Eight landmarks were digitized on each individual bone using a Microscribe Digitizer. Results from the Principle Components Analysis provide promising clustering between male and female groups, as well as indications that the method may be ancestry-specific, and that parity may have an effect on the shape of female pubic bones. The Discriminant Function analysis of the training data set resulted in 96.2% accuracy in predicting the correct sex, and the testing data set resulted in 94.6% accuracy (p This research is groundbreaking within the field of forensic anthropology because refining the use of the method to a small portion of bone which can accurately predict the sex of an individual greatly increases the applicability toward real forensic casework. Very rarely is a forensic anthropologist presented with an entire human skeleton to analyze; much more often we are presented with fragments which must be analyzed to provide as much information as possible. Improving this method so that it is accurate on small portions of bone is a huge advantage to the forensic anthropologist, especially if they must testify as an expert in court. It is important to back up all estimations and information with metrically determined results; this method provides a new and very accurate metric method. As this method continues to be validated on more samples in the future, it could change the way unknown human remains are analyzed and identified.