Metric and Non-metric Morphological Traits of the Sternum in Mapuche

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Mariano del Sol; Bélgica Vásquez & Mario Cantín


The aim was to describe the metric and non-metric morphological traits of the sternum in Mapuche males and to compare these parameters with other world populations. A descriptive study on 50 dry adult Mapuche male individuals Sterna from the region of Araucania, Chile, aged between 20 and 84 years were reviewed. The length of the sternum was measured in mm as the combined length of the manubrium and body of the sternum from the incisura jugularis to the mesoxiphoid junction, and manubrium and body of the sternum independently along the midesagittal plane. To the xiphoid process , was also determined length, width and thickness. The non-metric features such as shape and presence of foramina were observed and recorded in each case. In the sternum, mean length was 186.2±20.6 mm, in the manubrium 49.97± 13.68 mm and for the body of the sternum was 98.90 ± 13.40. The greater thickness and width was observed on the manubrium 14.37±1.76 and 62.80±5.67 mm, respectively, followed by the body of the sternum. The xiphoid process showed the smaller both in length, width and thickness. Sternal and xiphoid foramina was observed in 8% and 12%, and bifid and paddle shape were the most common observed in the xiphoid process. The morphology of the sternum allows forensic anthropological and characterize features in a specific population. Metric traits as the combined length of the sternum, could be used to discriminate sex and estimate the height in the individual Mapuche, while non-metric may be relevant to determine biological variation, estimating age or aspects of clinical interest in the Mapuche population.

KEY WORDS: Sternum; Osteometry, Mapuche; Metric traits, non-metric traits; Morphological characteristics.

How to cite this article

SANHUEZA, A.; OTZEN, T.; MANTEROLA, C. & ARANEDA, N. Statistical approaches for analyzing a continuous Outcome in experimental studies. Int. J. Morphol., 32(1):339-350, 2014.