Quantitative analysis of three-dimensional landmark coordinate data

Joan Therese Richtsmeier

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


The advantages of using three-dimensional (3D) data in the description and analysis of biological forms are obvious: these data provide realistic, geometrically integrated models of the forms under study, and can be rotated, translated and dissected electronically for viewing. 3D coordinate data can be collected from several sources including computed tomographic images, stereo photographs, specially designed microscopes, and digitizers. But once collected, how can these data be analyzed to address biologically relevant research questions? This paper demonstrates the capabilities of two analytical techniques, finite-element scaling analysis and Euclidean distances matrix analysis, in the comparison of 3D biological forms. Examples include studies of growth of the craniofacial complex, and analyses of differences in form between members of biologically defined groups (e.g. species, sexes, diagnostic categories).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12-23
Number of pages12
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - Jan 1 1991
EventBiostereometric Technology and Applications - Boston, MA, USA
Duration: Nov 7 1990Nov 8 1990

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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