Histomorphometric and fractal analysis of femoral, tibial, and metatarsal compact bone samples in sheep (Ovis aries), goat (Capra hircus), and roe deer (Capreolus capreolus)


Abstract: Histological sections of femur, tibia, and metatarsals originating from sheep (Ovis aries), goat (Capra hircus), and roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) were examined in this study. Our research focused mainly on the quantitative characteristics of the microstructure of these bones. The areas, perimeters, minimum and maximum diameters of the secondary Haversian units, as well as structures of the primary osteonal units were assessed using comparative statistical methods. In addition to these parameters, the present paper investigated the usefulness of fractal analysis (fractal dimension and lacunarity), a new approach that quantifies the complexity and the emptiness pattern of biological structures. Moreover, our work uses pattern recognition methods as well as classical morphometric assessment methods, which appear to generate useful data for bone sample differentiation. Therefore, combining these methods should greatly facilitate further research in veterinary morphology, and forensic and legal veterinary medicine.

Keywords: Osteon, fractals, sheep, goat, roe deer, histomorphometry, archaeozoology, legal veterinary medicine

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