• Quantitative analysis of the morphological changes of the pubic symphyseal face and the auricular surface and implications for age at death estimation

      Villa, C.; Buckberry, Jo; Cattaneo, C.; Frohlich, B.; Lynnerup, N. (May 2015)
      Age estimation methods are often based on the age-related morphological changes of the auricular surface and the pubic bone. In this study, a mathematical approach to quantify these changes has been tested analyzing the curvature variation on 3D models from CT and laser scans. The sample consisted of the 24 Suchey–Brooks (SB) pubic bone casts, 19 auricular surfaces from the Buckberry and Chamberlain (BC) “recording kit” and 98 pelvic bones from the Terry Collection (Smithsonian Institution). Strong and moderate correlations between phases and curvature were found in SB casts (ρ 0.60–0.93) and BC “recording kit” (ρ 0.47–0.75), moderate and weak correlations in the Terry Collection bones (pubic bones: ρ 0.29–0.51, auricular surfaces: ρ 0.33–0.50) but associated with large individual variability and overlap of curvature values between adjacent decades. The new procedure, requiring no expert judgment from the operator, achieved similar correlations that can be found in the classic methods.